Historic Preservation In Wytheville

Today’s Topics:

  • What Am I Doing in Wytheville?
  • Surveying
  • Exploration

What Am I Doing in Wytheville?

During this past summer, my roommate and I were recommended by a faculty member for a project in Wytheville.

We then had to be selected by the Undergraduate Chair of the Architecture Program, and interviewed by the owner of the project.

Wytheville is a town that is about an hour south of Blacksburg, VA and the site that we are working on is on the historic register.

It was originally built around 1870-1880 and has remained sturdy for over a century.


The work that we will be doing on this project is a multi-phase process.

We are first starting off by surveying the house. We have both done surveying before, but never at this scale. The level of precision and accuracy is much more important.

About 20 years ago there was a renovation that added an additional room to the basement of the house, but pretty much everything else has been untouched.

One of the major problems is the condition of the house. Over time the house has shifted, bent twisted and moved in a number of directions. The floors have holes, loose boards, is slanted. About half the doors have become slanted alongside the window frames.

There is so much work that can be done and it’s exciting to imagine the possibilities it holds.


One of my favorite experiences with this project so far is being able to develop an understanding of the concept behind the house.

We’ve spent 2 full days so far working on the house. The first time was mainly figuring out our process and getting measurements. Which is how it typically would work.

The second time we went, we started noticing patterns that started from the foundation plan in the basement. The foundation was the framework for the concept that was repeated through the remaining two floors.

It is a proportional system with a row of main rooms, and support rooms that are joined together through a double corridor.

Understanding this allowed us to interpret the plan of this house much better. Once we are further into the process, this will help drive all of the decisions we make in terms of how we manipulate the program.

This is a very exciting project and I’m looking forward to sharing more about it in the future.

Thanks for tuning into this week’s blog post, I hope you enjoyed it! As always, Dream Big!

Published by Alonzo Colon

Architecture Student at Virginia Tech

3 thoughts on “Historic Preservation In Wytheville

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