During the planning stages of the basement remodel, the structural engineer suggested removing the living room columns now rather than in a few years when we remodel the main floor. That way, they won't have to re-do the structural walls in the basement in a few years. I have been eager to see the columns go, and the leftover wall bit that served no purpose. Mary liked climbing the columns, but it turns out it was a good thing we got rid of them when we did, because nothing was supporting them from underneath, and they were starting to sink through the sub-floor into the basement. The crew put 700 pounds of steel in the living room ceiling to support the 2nd floor. They jacked up the floor from below to make it more level, so they'll be able to get the new joists into the basement ceiling. It was quite an operation. I love standing by the front door and looking into that newly opened space. Without that leftover wall piece in the way, you can see all the way into the back of the room, rather than staring at the dead end of a hallway. It looks extra big, since we haven't moved the furniture back in yet.