Please bear with me - I am not very skilled in the area of house renovations and building structures.
We had a business come in and draw up plans for a new kitchen. It involved knocking out the 'fridge' wall that has cupboards and fridge against it so-as to have the kitchen also take up some of the playroom you can see behind the 'fridge' wall.
They were going to charge AU$10,000 (Australian), about US$7,000, to remove the 'fridge' wall since they claimed it is load bearing and I guess they were going to put a steel beam above it and attached to the truss. I don't know enough to doubt them. What I want to know is, could we reduce the cost with an alternative design?
Let us say that directly ahead is North (approx correct - this photo is in the Southern Hemisphere so our sun is to the North).
In the basement below this is a 5 x 4.8m (16.4 x 16 feet) brick room that runs from the back of the sink (South) that is just to the left outside this photo across to half-way across that hallway you see with coats in it - one way (North to South). And from an external wall at the very left of the photo (West) through to a wall that is just to the right of the photo (East) - the other way (East to West). Huge beams (huge for me at least - 31cm (12.2 inches) wide and 5cm (2 inches) thick) run North to South under the floor sitting on top of the brick room, and are about 60cm (24 inches) apart.
There is a truss that runs East to West above the 'fridge' wall. And another that ultimately sits on-top of the North side of the brick room.
Can anyone suggest the cheapest (and still effective) way to remove the 'fridge' wall? The small hallway to the right along with its door would remain. I was thinking a vertical support beam from floor to ceiling under the truss. The idea is to make one big kitchen that extends in to the play room behind the fridge. The vertical column wouldn't be ideal though I'm sure if this reduces the cost we can blend it in to a design easily.