Grand Award: Old-New Conversation

The renovation of a neglected Queen Anne Victorian listed on the National Register of Historic Places uses materials and massing elements to relate the new house to the old.

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Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this 1891 Queen Anne Victorian had been abandoned for 20 years after a fire. “We tried to have the new house speak to the old with the use of materials, through the massing elements,” designer Anne Decker says. The “one-and-one-half-story roofline served as a hyphen between old and new. All the main rooms have their own rooflines. We tried to tell the story of what was going on inside the house.”

The renovations include a first-floor guest bedroom and two children’s bedrooms upstairs. The new portion has adjoining dining and family rooms, which open to the kitchen and breakfast nook. Upstairs is a master suite and laundry. A computer area is in the link between the old and new. To bring the outside in, the flagstone on the porch works its way into the foyer then out onto the pool terrace surround.

The judges liked the design in the context of the site and the way Rill & Decker Architects defined the space of both the indoor and outdoor environment. “It’s a classic,” they said.

Location: Chevy Chase, Md.
Designer:   Rill & Decker Architects, Bethesda, Md.
Contractor: David J. Brown Construction, Cabin John, Md.

See list of all 2008 RDA winners.