Building the Future by Preserving the Past: The Glass Light Hotel & Gallery

Designed in 1911 and built in 1912, the historic Royster Building was originally constructed as the headquarters for the F.S. Royster Fertilizer Company. The 15-story Classical-Revival structure was predominantly used as an office building, and most recently served as the headquarters for the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority until its reimagining as an intellectually curious boutique hotel — Glass Light Hotel & Gallery. The adjacent building was built in 1900 and was used for many purposes, including a department store, movie theatre, and, most recently, offices for the City of Norfolk. It now eloquently displays rotating exhibits of exquisite glass art from local and internationally renowned artists.

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Ann Neeriemer on a Second Life for Old Spaces

Perkins Eastman Associate Principal Ann Neeriemer, AIA, is no stranger to taking an existing space that served one purpose historically and designing it for today’s students and teachers. With previous projects primarily in the DMV area, Neeriemer is now based in Raleigh, NC and leads the education division for Perkins Eastman’s offices in the Carolinas. She discusses several adaptive reuse education projects, including a nurses’ dormitory on the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, now the site of the District of Columbia International School (DCI).

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Hanbury Reinvents Mary Washington Hub Seacobeck Hall for the Next 100 years

Until 2015, the social hub of the Fredericksburg campus of the University of Mary Washington was a 1928 dining hall designed by Robinson and Walford (with a 1951 addition by Walford and Wright). “Seaco” was part of the original campus plan for what was then known as the Fredericksburg State Teachers College and even until its last days, it remained the spot where students could grab a late-night slice of pizza or an early-morning coffee as they head to classes elsewhere on campus. Robinson and Walford’s original scheme featured a dome room with two grand dining halls. Its successor firm Walford and Wright added two more dining halls later to accommodate a growing student body — making it four distinct wings with a central kitchen under the dome.

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The Heathen’s Guide to Going to Church: Adaptive Reuse of a Bygone Typology

THE STORY

The heart of communities in the West has always been the church, where congregants have not only worshiped and found greater meaning in their lives, but built their social lives around this hub. However, in recent decades, changing demographics and secularization have depreciated the church’s position as the social locus of society. This phenomenon is particularly conspicuous in Europe where its large, historic cathedrals have become progressively more vacant.

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Restoring Curved Stained Glass Windows

When Virginia Commonwealth University decided to embark on a rehabilitation of the Scott House, it was evident that the stained glass windows of the ornate Breakfast Room would require specialized repairs.  The deflection of the glass was to the point of physically separating from the metal matrix that joins the pieces of glass, known as cames, posing a threat to the physical integrity of the windows.  Adding a layer of complexity to the challenge was the fact that each window was curved and the cames were zinc, not the typical lead.

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Case Study: Transforming VCU’s Scott House

The Scott House, completed in 1911 and more than 18,000 square-feet, was designed by Richmond architecture firm Noland and Baskervill. One of the grandest residences of its day, it was built for Frederic William Scott and Elizabeth Strother Scott in a Beaux Arts style. The design references Newport’s Marble House, which in turn looks to the Petit Trianon at Versailles. The exterior is Tennessee limestone and terra cotta on the first and second floors, with a copper-clad, recessed third floor, as well as a copper-clad conservatory on the first floor. A rear service wing is made of buff brick. According to the National Register, its interior “can be understood as an architectural museum, with rooms in many different styles.”

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The Essex: Via’s Home

A case study by Jacqueline Childress, Associate IIDA, LEED® Green Associate, Andrew McKinley, AIA, LEED AP®, and Haley Morgan

Historic Photo of the Essex Building at theCorner of Bank and Plume Corner of Bank + Plume at Dusk
The Essex. Image courtesy of Via.

Architecture is a design process focused on creating spaces for people. The building itself, formed of solid materials like steel and masonry, forms a shelter for people to occupy. But the interiors are what connect to human emotions, create a sense of place, and establish the identity for the building’s functions.

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