John and Matthew answer a question from Mike in Toronto about the development of his basement. "Hi John and Matthew, I'm currently in the process of developing my basement, but I am having some issues and am hoping you can provide some direction. I am having trouble with the layout as I am not sure how to deal with bulkheads for heat supply and cold air returns. Any bulkheads would be along the North wall. I hope to have about 7ft high finished height to the ceiling,(and of course less under the bulkheads). I would like to incorporate a 3pce bath, laundry, utility/furnace room and rec room (and only if possible a second kitchen). The door at the front North side leads into the cold storage room. I am getting good light at the front of the house, but a friend suggested putting all laundry and bath at the front (or near bottom of stairs) so guests can use the bath rather than walking all the way to the back and laundry would be close by also. But having a rec room at the back would be dark. I am having a hard time deciding whether to put the rec room at the front or back of the house. As well how to fit in a shower, toilet and sink without getting into a low head room situation. I understand that leaving the back open would allow for any future addition. I have a flush mounted steel beam running down the center of the house so any duct work at the front or back of the house has to drop under the beam. the joists run north and south. I would also like to freshen up the front entrance, stairs and front porch roof, since the porch roof needs to be replaced anyway. I followed the segment on stairs with no railings but I can't seem to come up with a decent design. I also like the modern flat roof ideas but am not sure if it is feasible here. Thanks, Mike"
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