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The Globe and Mail

Home of the Week: Rathnelly house was architect prof's pet project

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This semi-detached Victorian house was once owned by Fraser Watts, an architecture professor at the University of Toronto and later dean of architecture at the University of Waterloo. In the mid-1960s, he gave the conservative row house a mid-century modern makeover, with the addition of some decidedly sixties touches, including cedar ceilings and a sunken living room.

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When the curent owners decided to once again change the house, they did so in a thoughtful process aimed to update Dr. Watts’s vision.

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“The renovation was a real marriage. We tried to bring the best of what was already in the house into a contemporary setting,” said contractor Kerry Dorey.

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The most important change to the house, says the current owner, was the renovation to the front of the first floor. The kitchen was opened up and a big bay window was installed that shines light onto the open dining space, which is perched above the sunken living room.

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