Home expansion may require an architect

Q We want to expand our kitchen-family room with an addition to the sunroom. It should run the full width of the kitchen but cannot extend outward more than 4 or 5 feet without visually disturbing the low-slung roof line and the view beyond it. We wish to gain full value from passive solar heat in the winter but what can we do to cool the area in the summer? Also, may we install a stove or fireplace without the blocking the view. Do you have any suggestions? We wondder if a glass roof is a possibility? M. E. Meisner Elkhart, Ind.

A This is a design problem which should be handled by an architect right on the spot. He must calculate and integrate all the structural and aesthetic conditions which exist -- and this cannot be done from a great distance. The best advice from here -- southern Arizona -- is for you to meet with a professional designer since this problem, although not of great magnitude, does require special attention and design skill.

This is precisely what an architect or building designer is trained to do.

Be willing to pay a reasonable fee for this professional design service, which will provide you with the working plans and specifications for the project and which the remodeler or builder will follow in doing the job.

In building design there is almost no little job really. There are so many aspects of a project which have to be correlated and brought to light in a satisfactory and pleasing way.

An amateur design job may spoil an otherwise delightful addition.

Discuss the glass-roof prospect with the designer for his pros and cons -- and then make up your mind if that is the route you wish to follow.

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