Archive for the ‘building and remodeling’ category

199 State Street Renovation Project 2015

July 31st, 2015

Greenway Place Luxury Condos Renovation 2015

199 State Street Renovation Project 2015. In case you missed our blog article in May about the beginning of this luxury condo renovation (before Pictures) at the Rose Kennedy GreenWay on the historic State Street. If you did see it, welcome back. Here’s what we’ve been up to. We’re breaking down the walls in Boston, turning 2 condos into one luxurious space; 4 bedrooms and 3 1/2 baths, 2 fireplaces. Prepare yourself for some extraordinary After pictures of a renovation gone well.

Private Elevator Entrance Hallway. 199 State Street Renovation Project 2015. Connaughton Construction.A grand hallway

entrance invites you in with 2 big walnut double doors, new hardwood floors and new custom milled wood trim all around. What once was a common hallway turned private entry with private elevator for this luxury condo owner. The walnut doors are custom made with a 2 hour fire rating, a special fireproof core that can withstand heat for about 2 hours. The hallway has a new ceiling, new lighting.  Walk inside the apartment from the first door on the left by elevator, you walk into the inside entrance to the condominium.



Hallway Expanded Two Condos - 199 State Street Renovation Project 2015.  Connaughton Construction.The main entry foyer.

On each side of the walnut doors are custom designed built-in display areas with mirrors in the back for an even larger than life effect on the space and creating a reflection of the incredible view outside of the Kennedy Greenway. The countertops are calcatta marble imported from Italy. The same marble used in the kitchen countertops. The columns mark the walls that once existed separating the two spaces. Beyond you see the electric fireplace.

Wood Beams Exposed 

The drop ceilings are gone and original beams are exposed. The stain and finish of the beams is a light color in the kitchen, making the ceilings appear even higher than their 8 1/2 feet. It truly did brighten up the space!

The foyer is full of elegant Lighting, classic architecture, exposed beams, new hardwood floors.


While removing the drop ceiling, we found an arched ceiling. We Custom Kitchen -199 State Street Renovation Project 2015. Connaughton Construction.restored it with new plaster. The light color custom cabinets and new hardwood flooring are perfectly accented by the white italian, with subtle grey and gold veining, marble countertops by Calacatta. Something that is really special about this marble countertop is that marble is usually 1 1/4″ – 1 1/2″ thick. This marble is 2″ thick. If you look closely, you might see blue tabs on the cabinets. That is because the hardware is on order from France. All appliances are Viking and Thermador stainless steel appliances, used by executive chefs around the world. Dierdre chose the Viking double oven, a side-by-side refrigerator, microwave and stove top. The stove has a ductless ventilation system. A solution provided by Connaughton Construction with the stove on an inside wall and the inability to run duct work above or below this unit. They thought of everything down to an electrical outlet in the middle of the floor. The built-in shelves, flat screen tv and ventless gas fireplace.


Baths -199 State Street Renovation Project 2015. Connaughton Construction.Guest Bath.

The guest bath is a new bathroom. The wall between the shower and the rest of the bath area is a glass shower door with built-in cabinets that hide a pipe shaft. A wall hung toilet with a wall flush is in place due to the location the architect wanted the toilet.  This is a new bath with no existing plumbing. In order to run new plumbing, we would need access to the ceiling in the condominium below. Using the wall hung toilet allowed us to perform all work right here within the bathroom. Turns out, it’s a space saver as well.


The bath on the left in the picture is an existing bath updated with new lighting, new faucets, new tile, and a new mirror to continue the new style according to the renovation. We removed the old medicine cabinets, hung the large mirror and installed wall mounted faucet and handles. The beams were refinished and lightened, the walls repainted and a new shower door installed.


Bedroom with Original Brick, Stone and Skylights. 199 State Street Renovation Project 2015. Connaughton Construction.

In this Bedroom,

we preserve the character of this old mill with original beams, skylights, brick walls and stone structures in the walls. The beams were carefully refinished with a lighter color by our wood refinisher and the room repainted to lighten up the space.




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Architect on project; Darin Mardock, Mardock Designs, Inc., Boston.
Photograph credits to Darin Mardock, Mardock Designs, Inc., Boston.

10 Responsibilities of a Construction Manager

February 21st, 2015

At the helm of every hard hat project, from building a single family to an apartment building, is a construction project manager (CM). A CM has the primary responsibility of planning a particular construction job and overseeing its progress along the way.

10 Responsibilities of a Construction Manager. Connaughton Construction.

Plan the Work

Before the first nail is hammered, it is the Responsibility of a Construction Manager to plan the work the crew will do.

The CM looks over a proposed project to determine how and when the work will be performed, including prep work that must be completed before the building starts. A cost estimate is determines the price of the project. The CM then develops a deliverables schedule. This schedule is the road map the construction team must stick to in order to finish the job in a timely and cost-effective manner. And the construction manager must review the project in depth in order to be prepared to handle tasks that come up along the way.

Hire Subcontractors

On a construction site, the CM is the boss. “They want you to cook the dinner; at least they ought to let you shop for some of the groceries,” legendary NFL coach Bill Parcells once famously said of his desire to be involved in choosing the players for his teams. For construction project managers, the sentiment holds true when it comes to selecting the right players to complete the job.

The construction manager is not only responsible for planning the work and making sure it gets done, but also supervising the hard hats who do it. That means coordinating and directing the efforts of construction workers. It also means hiring, disciplining and perhaps even firing those who step out of line. In other words, it’s the CM’s job to get the work done through other people.

Get Materials

The CM must obtain the right materials for the job and supplies — from nails to bulldozers — necessary to complete the project. Not to mention finding a place to store supplies and implement a method for tracking inventory. It’s important that the CM be thorough in this aspect of the job. Keeping costs within budget while ensuring that no time will be lost waiting on additional equipment or repairs once construction begins.

Set Goals

A construction CM may not be the one drilling holes, turning screws and hammering nails, but it’s his or her responsibility to make sure all of the work is done properly, on time and within the projected cost.

The CM typically sets specific project goals after the contract with the owner (client) is signed. The CM reviews the contractual conditions of performance – requirements and deliverables – to determine precisely the work that must be accomplished in order to satisfy the contract. He or she then determines cost and time goals as well as “micro-goals” for accomplishing different phases of the construction. Based on these goals, the CM sets out the number of workers and types of supplies and materials necessary to reach them.

Stay On Time

A particular job typically comes with a very specific set of objectives and constraints. The time in which it should be completed is a key goal. It is the responsibility of a Construction Manager to closely manage time. The construction contract often includes money penalties against the builder in the event the project runs late. Time, indeed, is money.

In order to meet an overall construction deadline, the CM must set a specific schedule with a number of deadlines for the various projects that must be completed. The CM  reviews the work on a daily basis to ensure that it’s timely progressing. If there’s a slow down – whether because of weather, an accident or simply a task that takes longer than expected – the CM must make changes to get the job back on track.

Stay Under Budget

The CM must keep money in mind while overseeing the work.

Before the work begins, the CM runs cost estimates – considering subcontractors, wages and materials – to help establish a budget. Cost-projection is a crucial aspect of construction management because it determines the parameters under which not only the work will be done, but also on which the project’s financial success will be determined.

Once the project begins, the CM must ensure his crew doesn’t overrun the budget. Thus, he or she oversees costs on a daily or at least weekly basis, comparing costs incurred to the estimates and limiting or eliminating costs as necessary to stay under budget.

Keep Client (and Boss) in the Loop

On a construction site, the CM may be the boss, but he serves two masters: the construction company that employs him and the client for whom a particular project is being built.

The CM is expected to keep both of these parties informed as to the ongoing process and any hiccups that come along across the way. This is typically done by preparing a variety of internal and external reports pertaining to job status, equipment, policies and procedures along with a host of other issues. If an issue arises that will cause the construction schedule to change, for example, the PM must inform the client of the situation, projecting how it is expected to affect timing and costs and specifying any planned adjustments to be made.

Proper Permitting

The Historic District of Boston has strict permitting guidelines. It takes an experienced and diligent team of architect and contractor to know the Back Bay Architectural Commission requirements. All exterior work (whether or not it is visible from a public way) requires the review of the Back Bay Architectural Commission.  A Certificate of Appropriateness, Design Approval, or Exemption Application must be submitted to and approved by the Commission prior to beginning any exterior work.

To keep a project moving, the Architect lays out the design and obtains the commission approval. The Construction Manager obtains the proper permits and keeps the project moving forward organizing many tradesman toward completion of the project.

Draft Contracts

The contract between the owner and builder typically spells out all the work to be done. It is therefore imperative that the CM be involved in drafting it and be closely familiar with the requirements in order to ensure that they’re met.

But this isn’t the only agreement that a CM must manage to make sure the project goes off without a hitch. There are also architects, materials suppliers and subcontractors (electricians, carpenters and heating and cooling professionals, for example) to be located and brought into the fold. The CM must monitor agreements with each of these parties covering the various pieces of the building project puzzle that they will complete.

Manage Risk

An essential component of troubleshooting is risk management; that is, limiting the amount of trouble that will need to be “shot.” A wide variety of factors present potential risk in a construction project: site conditions; design assumptions; public regulations; worker safety; and environmental concerns and regulation, to name a few. As a result of the increasing number of risks, owners have taken to sharing it by requiring that a builder be at least partially liable in the event of a loss due to these factors .

It is therefore the CM’s job to analyze risks going into the project so that both the builder and the client are aware of them and can reach a mutual agreement on how the risk will be shared. Once construction is underway, the CM must try to mitigate the risks by carefully selecting materials and equipment and closely monitoring the work being performed.

 10 Responsibilities of a Construction Manager

Renovations from the ground up. Connaughton Construction. On Time. On Budget. Quality Craftsmanship. Our signature.

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The Benefits of Solar Panels for Homeowners

October 9th, 2014

Benefits of Solar Panelssolar panels

Solar Panels provide energy savings through lower electric bills. You can save  25 percent or more annually on your utility bill and avoid unpredictable rate hikes that can be 6 percent. In a recent Boston Globe article both NSTAR and National Grid announced winter rate hikes that will average about 10%.

Solar Panels increase home values

For every $1,000 annual reduction in your utility costs, the value of the home increases by an estimated $20,000. Here’s another way to look at it: Homeowners recoup 97 percent of the investment it takes to go solar while those who upgrade their kitchen get back about 60 percent of their investment.

Solar Panels have environmental benefits

A solar PV(photovoltaic) system that provides about half of a household’s electrical use eliminates CO2 emissions equivalent to operating two fossil-fuel burning cars for almost 30 years.

Reducing the electricity we draw from the grid means reducing carbon emissions. This results in cleaner air, cleaner water and cleaner soil for your family and community, for generations.

Solar Panels Create Jobs

Solar jobs come in many forms, from manufacturing, installing, monitoring and maintaining solar panels, to research and design, development, cultural integration, and policy jobs. Choosing to go solar helps the economy as well as your wallet.

Solar Panels Have Buying and Leasing options

Buying requires an upfront investment, and you can start saving money immediately by taking advantage of the various incentives and rebate programs available to you. You also get a warranty on your panels.

With Leasing, you don’t have to worry about maintaining, repairing or insuring your panels. There’s usually no initial cost with leasing. You also buy energy at a lower rate than if you received it from the electric companies, so you save money right away.

Most home solar power systems last between 25 and 35 years, and there’s no maintenance needed. Rain and melting snow keep the panels clean and operating efficiently.

Contact Connaughton Construction

to discuss whether solar panels are a good choice for your home. Set up your personal Consultation. If you prefer to talk to someone on the phone, please call John with Connaughton Construction at 781-899-1438 x 14 or Ellen at x13.

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Connaughton Construction Featured in New England Home
Selecting Reclaimed Flooring for the Home or Store
5 Eco Friendly Choices for Building and Remodeling Part 1 of 2
5 Eco Friendly Choices for Building and Remodeling Part 2 of 2
Six Critical Decisions a Construction Manager Helps You Make
Caesarstone: Colors, Textures, and Applications

Caesarstone: Colors, Textures and Applications

September 25th, 2014

If You Can Visualize it, Caesarstone Has It

Caesarstone has the right color, texture and application combination for your home renovation project.

Caesarstone Color Choices

Caesarstone has 45 distinct colors to choose from. Presently four colors offered are made from recycled material. Both Quartz Reflections and Ruby Reflections are colors are made with up to 35% post-consumer recycled glass and up to 42% reclaimed quartz. Chocolate Truffle and Smoky Ash are colors made with up to 17% post-consumer recycled glass.

Caesarstone Textures

Caesarstones’ three standard collections give the customer flexibility and creative freedom when choosing the texture of their quartz countertop surface. You can choose from a more modern sleek finish or a surface that’s rustic in texture and a variety of choices in between.

  • The Motivo collection is patterned and textured
  • The Concetto collection resembles semi precious stones
  • The Classico collection has the largest variety, with over 30 colors to choose from.

Caesarstone’s newest collection, Calacatta Nuvo, 
is a gorgeous new design crafted with the look of natural marble in mind. It combines the beauty of luxurious natural stone with the wonderful characteristics of Caesarstone.

With these four diverse collections, your Caesarstone surface can go smooth and sophisticated or textured and embossed, the choice is yours.

Caesarstone Applications

The versatility of Caesarstone allows for flexible installation. You can choose the way it is cut and the type of edges it has. Caesarstone can be installed in thinner slabs to save weight, or in larger sections to reduce the amount of surface joints.

Caesarstone is not only ideal for interior residential situations. In accordance with the sanitary standards of the National Health and Safety Foundation International, Caesarstone surfaces are qualified for installation in hospitals, restaurants, hotels and more. You can put Caesarstone in heavy use, high traffic areas knowing it can stand up to your daily demands.

Caesarstone will last a lifetime — and is the only quartz surfacing company to offer a Lifetime Warranty. With a small amount of care, your Caesarstone surface will look as great as the day you bought it for years to come.

Whether it’s residential or commercial, a large kitchen work space or a decorative section of flooring, Caesarstone manufactures quality quartz surfaces for a range of  applications. From kitchen countertops, bathroom vanities and counters, to custom solutions for any home. It’s beauty and durability have inspired all sorts of surprising creative uses as well, such as wall paneling,  floor covering, and  many commercial applications.

Caesarstone modern bathroom

Caesarstone: Colors, Textures and Applications


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Contact Connaughton Construction

to discuss your luxury design project. Set up your personal Design Consultation. If you prefer to talk to someone on the phone, please call John with Connaughton Construction at 781-899-1438 x 14 or  Ellen at x13.

More Inspiring articles

Top 10 Luxury Design Trends 2014

Spectacular Stairway Collection

Connaughton Construction Featured in New England Home

Selecting Reclaimed Flooring for the Home or Store

 Eco Friendly Choices for Building and Remodeling Part 1 of 2

 Eco Friendly Choices for Building and Remodeling Part 2 of 2

Six Critical Decisions a Construction Manager Helps You Make

Benefits of Solar Panels