Caroline Eader is planning a move.
But first, she must secure a route in Boulder along which moving contractors can haul the two-story, 1,800-square-foot historic bungalow from the Grandview neighborhood to a property in the Chautauqua area -- and the middle of the night is the best time for a house to travel.
She must also coordinate the "parade of home" route with Xcel Energy, Comcast and Century Link so they can lift their power lines out of the way. She needs to clear out the asbestos in the building, which dates back to 1909, apply for landmark preservation and work out the financing for the "free" home. And, oh, the paperwork. Lots of paperwork.
Eader is arduously working to preserve one of the three historic Grandview bungalows that the University of Colorado had originally planned to demolish but decided instead to award to anybody willing to relocate them. The city and university together put up $100,000 worth of funding for each of the three houses to help alleviate costs for anybody who would relocate them.
"I would hate to see this house turn into a pile of rubble and go into the landfill and not be appreciated," said Eader, who has a background in real estate and a special interest in the environment and sustainability. She also earned a certificate from CU's Sustainable Practices Program.
On March 6, CU notified Eader that the school intended to award her the bungalow. She needs to submit several documents to CU in coming days to complete the process -- including a contractor's license verification and an insurance coverage form. She'll have until Sept. 16 to relocate the home, according to a letter from CU.
But an initial "ballpark" quote from Xcel Energy alone totaled between $60,000 and $80,000. Eader said she is working on an alternative route -- one that would cut through University Hill -- to perhaps lessen the costs from utility companies.
"The good news is if they do decide to go this alternative route, that ballpark estimate will go down," said Mark Stutz, a spokesman for Xcel Energy.
CU officials will pay $50,000 toward the costs of moving each house once a submission has been accepted and the house is successfully relocated, minus costs that CU pays for asbestos abatement. That's roughly equivalent to what CU would have spent to demolish the houses.
Additionally, Boulder officials will pay $50,000 if the property is relocated within the city of Boulder and an application for landmarking the building is submitted.
CU spokeswoman Malinda Miller-Huey said several individuals have been interested in each of the houses. The awards process has not yet been finalized, but she expects it to be later this month.
In summer 2012, the university announced a request for proposals from qualified house movers and contractors to relocate the houses from 1220, 1243 and 1244 Grandview Ave.
The university announced in December it would extend its bidding process. During the original request-for-proposal process conducted this summer and fall, CU didn't receive any proposals that met the qualifications despite the financial incentives.
"It was clear from the beginning that moving and preserving a historical bungalow would be an expensive undertaking," Miller-Huey said. "Since we do feel it's important to preserve these historic buildings, we've been working closely with the city, and that's how we came up with the incentive for relocation and repairs."
Eader said preserving the home fits several of her interests. Her mother is a genealogist. Her father, a master electrician, built the house she grew up in. Her daughter is an architect and has helped her appreciate historical details. And her son is a contractor.
The house at 1243 Grandview Ave., she said, is a "culmination of everything I think is important."
Eader said she wants to make 21st-century updates to the house yet still maintain the historical integrity.
After the house is successfully relocated, Eader said she'd like to add a detached two-car garage and make the house solar-ready with future plans to add an array of panels to the roof of the garage. She said she is also evaluating a gray water capture system. Such a system recycles water that can be used to flush toilets or water gardens.
Over the years, the bungalows have served as office space for various groups on the CU campus, including the Conference on World Affairs and the Institute of Behavioral Science.
The bungalow at 1220 Grandview Ave. once belonged to George Reynolds, a well-known CU professor and respected biblical, Shakespearean and English literature scholar, according to Historic Boulder. Reynolds, who died in 1964, left his bungalow to the university and donated money to the city of Boulder for a library branch, which is named in his memory.
Contact Camera Staff Writer Brittany Anas at 303-473-1132 or firstname.lastname@example.org.