Merit Award: Victorian Modern

Sprocket Design-Build gives a Denver Victorian home circa 1882 modern sensibilities.

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Location: Denver
Contractor: Bob Young and Christine Paresi, Denver
Designer: Matthew McHugh, AIA, Sprocket Design-Build, Denver

Everything old is new again. This circa 1882 home had become a haven for drug dealers. Owners Bob Young and Christine Paresi, a builder and an interior designer respectively, hired Matthew McHugh and Sprocket Design-Build to design something that would maintain the home’s original integrity but add modern sensibilities.

The designers used steel skeletal frames inside and out for support and to create a modern and striking design. Cold-rolled steel clads the exterior, providing a rusted orange-brown patina. “We wanted a unique piece, since that volume in the center becomes the third-story volume,” McHugh says. “We didn’t want an attached [element just] stuck on an existing Victorian building.”

The judges praised the home’s exterior treatment and appreciated how the designers had integrated something new and fresh into an old neighborhood.

Inside, McHugh developed a “downtown open loft-style space,” opening the traditionally high first-floor ceilings by exposing the beams. The existing interior stairwell was remodeled and new treads, risers, and handrail elements added. Wide hickory floorboards and exposed brick warm the space. The integration of wood, steel, and other metals bring the home into the modern era while still relating to its original Victorian style.

—Stacey Freed, senior editor, REMODELING.