Can a Cambridge architect pull off a complete renovation — including a new high-end range — for less than $20,000?
Is a budget-minded kitchen renovation with a high-end range and custom carpentry an oxymoron? Not in the case of architectural designer Chiong Lin’s rehab of an 11-by-14-foot Cambridge kitchen.
The story begins in 2005. Lin was living in a late-1800s four-unit brick row house on a historic street near Central Square that seems to be a magnet for architects. “There are about half a dozen living nearby,” she says. “It’s both a community and a great location.” Lin had bought the building a decade before and had moved into the apartment that occupied the first and second floors. When she decided to buy a home in Brookline, she realized that her old apartment would need serious updating to be a proper rental. Lin, who was then working full time for a large firm, took on the project in her spare time, including a new kitchen.