When Wendy and I purchased Butternut Lake Lodge, we were particularly intrigued by the boathouse. This structure was being used as a storage building - completely utilitarian in nature. All the outdoor furniture was stored here in the wintertime. In the summer, life preservers and paddles were hung on the wall, along with some random fishing tackle.
The outside of the building wasn't much to look at. The barn wood siding was weather-worn, there were obvious signs of rot in some places, and the one window was small, leaving the interior rather dark. There were some exterior lights, but none of them worked (we later discovered that the electrical to the building was faulty).
The upper deck was in need of replacement. While it provided glorious views of the lake, it was becoming unsafe - the old wood had started to rot and splinter.
As we studied the building closer, we realized that the southeast corner of the building was resting on the ground. It had been wicking-up moisture for who knows how many years. We could also see that the roof had begun to fail (you could now see sunlight through it and the upper deck in one spot). As we crawled underneath the building, we came to grips with the fact that there was no secure foundation remaining, and the building had to come down. But could we reconstruct on the same site? And would there be enough time left in 2020 to undertake demolition and construction before winter weather arrived?
Price County allowed us to reconstruct a new building on the same footprint as the old building. The next step was to design a new building that really took advantage of the space and how we felt it would be best used. We wanted living and recreation space, not utilitarian storage. We also wanted to recreate the upper deck. So we got to drawing our building using CAD software and then went about getting a materials list together.