Monday, August 12, 2013

The DC Style Polish Flat

In Milwaukee there are houses known as "Polish flats." The main characteristics of these structures include living quarters on the first floor, and sort of a basement for a rental unit beneath. I'm not sure if the architecture on Capitol Hill is the same, but the idea certainly is. Most of the row houses around here have units with separate entryways leading to the lower level. Most of the front doors of these lower level spaces are found right under the front door of the main house. What I am wondering is who lives here? How does the rain not invade the space, especially during a downpour? We have issues living on the first floor, never mind one level lower. How do you maneuver down the narrow steps without banging your head? What kind of furniture can you possibly fit through such a narrow door and down such a narrow staircase? Does the sunlight ever find its way in to this basement like setting? Some of these entryways look downright dangerous. But then again, I always think about how I would feel living in something like that. I'm sure for a lot of folks, it suits them just fine - as long as it is temporary? 

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