24 Bradford Street

Lookout

Lookout, 24 Bradford Street. [2022, Dunlap]


An undated photo of the “garrison Colonial” facade. [Town Assessor]


After the shingles and clapboard had been painted. [2011, Dunlap]


During renovation. [2018, Dunlap]


[2022, Dunlap]


[2022, Dunlap]


[2021, OceanHome]


William W. McKellar — retired Coast Guard commander, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, and chairman of the Airport Commission — owned this hilltop property until 1987 with his wife Agnes (Wilson) McKellar. Now called “Lookut,” it serves as a weekend home for the landscape architect Gregory Lombardi, founding principal of Gregory Lombardi Design in North Billerica, and his partner, Kent Newton.

Working with LDa Architecture and Interiors of Boston, among others, Lombardi transformed the 1960 “garrison Colonial” structure (the overhang gives it that name) while working largely within the existing volume and preserving a Japanese maple in the front yard. He and Newton were familiar with the house when they purchased it in 2016, for $1.2 million, because they had been invited to a weeklong group getaway there, as Lombardi recalled in an interview with Danna Lorch of OceanHome:

“I pulled up in front of this forlorn house and felt heartbroken,” Lombardi remembers. “I thought, How am I going to spend a week in this place?” But it grew on him almost immediately. The home is perched on a hill with large windows boasting views of the Long Point Lighthouse and is situated on one of the seaside town’s busiest drags. The design doesn’t fit in with the neighbors’ classic beach cottages, and that’s precisely what won Lombardi over. “We get to be Bohemian pirates here,” he laughs. …

[T]he couple moved the kitchen to the second floor, and that shift led to a total reimagining of the house, with a sleek front porch, and shiplap and cedar board-and-batten awakening the exterior. The project was completed in 2019, just in time to hold a family gathering for Thanksgiving before it became a haven during the pandemic. …

“For better or worse, it’s a very exposed public site and there’s a fair amount of traffic on the street,” [Lombardi] says. Tourists and townspeople parading down the main stretch often roll their car windows down to comment on the unusual home and introduce themselves. The lack of privacy can be overwhelming but is made up for by the genuine warmth of the community.1


¶ Last updated on 25 November 2022.


1 “Inside Look at Landscape Architect Greg Lombardi’s Cape Home Garden,” by Danna Lorch, OceanHome, 16 August 2021.


24 Bradford Street on the Town Map, showing property lines.



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