After getting a few bids on the backyard, we finally signed a contract. The work starts Wednesday. The design is approaching something that resembles Design B.
There were pros and cons for either keeping the trash near the alley or near the house, but with bids coming in higher than we decided to go with the cheaper option and put it closer to the house. It's easier to get to in the winter and allowed us to delete the 4' block wall near the alley. Summer said Bmore may be switching one 64 gallon trash can pick up per week, so the enclosure is sized for 2 of my garbage cans, or 1 new larger can, and my recycle bin. Other cost cuts included removing the few steps up into the planting bed, and the counter top area. It pained me to remove the counter area from the design, but in a tough economy it's tough to add design details that may not return your investment. This renovation hasn't been about making money, but we don't want to throw it away.
I'm exicted for the work to begin on Wednesday. The contractor said he thinks he can be done by the weekend. I seriously doubt he'll complete the job of laying all the masonry walls, hammering half of the back pad out and re-pouring this section of the pad. That's ok though. He may not be done by this weekend, but I'm pretty confident by next weekend the backyard will be looking much better.