Strolling east of Park Avenue’s restaurants, cafes and shops, one encounters the quiet ABC streets of Park Avenue: Audubon, Beverly, Calumet, etc. In this pleasant neighborhood stands the gray and white American Foursquare at 29 Girard Street. Built in 1920, it offers all the charms characteristic of houses in this area.
Approaching the front door, one passes a small front rock garden and a mature bed of rhododendron, azalea and holly bushes. Inside, the small entrance vestibule has two shallow coat cupboards hidden in the wood molding. The front hall, like the rest of the first floor, has solid oak flooring and unpainted oak trim. At one end, an oak staircase with white spindles leads to a beautiful large stained glass window on the landing. A powder room is nestled under the stairs.
The living room features a white-painted brick fireplace and oak mantle with bookcases on each side and stained glass windows depicting stylized swans. A large bay window overlooks the front yard, and another window, the expansive front porch. Across the hall, the dining room has a handsome white coffered ceiling and a built-in oak window seat which opens for storage. The dining room connects to the kitchen through an informal wood-paneled eating area with a stained glass window. Renovated in the 1980s, the small kitchen is pleasant and functional. On one wall, a cabinet with glass doors and interior lighting displays special china and glass. A back door leads to the clean basement, back yard and single car garage.
The second floor hall has a built-in oak linen cupboard, and opens to a bathroom and four bedrooms with good closet space. One bedroom adjoins a sleeping porch running the width of the house. Large casement windows on three sides overlook the birch, magnolia and tall pine trees in the small back yard, as well as daffodils and forsythia currently in bloom. This sun-lit porch would be a lovely place for a quiet cup of coffee, or a fun night sleeping ‘outside’ for the kids. The third floor contains a large attic storage space, a pleasant bathroom with a claw-foot tub, and the largest bedroom in the house. Its sloping ceiling with skylight provides be a cozy location for a desk, while the rest of the room accommodates a big bed and a large closet.
Well maintained by its owners of 31 years, 29 Girard St. is in move-in condition. With five bedrooms and two plus baths, it would make a nice family home, or provide a couple with ample office and guest space. It is just a few blocks from the East Avenue Wegmans and access to I-490 and I-590. Just around the corner is a footbridge to Cobbs Hill Park, which has tennis courts, playing fields and a hilltop reservoir overlooking the Rochester skyline.
This 2,214 square foot house is offered by Len (703-9421) and Sib Petix (738-1945) at Park Avenue Realtors. It is listed for $179,900 with taxes of $5,436 minus $429 Star exemption.
Rebecca Webb is affiliated with the University of Rochester Department of Linguistics. She is a Landmark Society member and enthusiastic resident of the Park Avenue area.