912 South Gaskins Road: A Modern addition mixes old and new | Great Homes of Richmond

Maria Lightfoot fell in love with the property the instant she noticed it. The 2,800-sq.-foot Colonial Revival at 912 South Gaskins Highway in western Henrico County was cozy and inviting, and it sat on a bucolic 2¼-acre ton that provided a pond and sweeping sights of meadows and aged-progress trees.

“Every look at was stunning,” she said.

Even so, she realized she’d want to make adjustments to the residence, if she and her husband, Mark Lightfoot, bought the residence. She envisioned expanding it with a substantial Modern-day-type addition that presented an open up floorplan and plenty of flooring-to-ceiling home windows wanting out on to the pastoral environment.

“I claimed, ‘This is wonderful, and I want to reside inside/outside,’” Lightfoot claimed.  “It was my desire.”

The Fashionable twist was not shocking. Lightfoot grew up in Midcentury Contemporary properties designed by her father, the Austrian-born architect Leopold Bruno Boeckl, and her have do the job as an interior designer favored the Present day aesthetic. The difficulty was locating the appropriate architect to assistance deliver her vision to lifetime. “I’d planned on doing work with my father, but he had a stroke,” she explained.

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Immediately after acquiring the property in 2018, they hired Dan Ensminger, principal of Henrico-primarily based Ensminger Architecture, to enable deliver their vision to existence. “Dan understood what I required to establish,” Lightfoot explained.

Ensminger’s design for the two-story addition would incorporate 2,000 sq. ft to the dwelling, with a multipurpose home and a two-car garage on the initial flooring and an open dwelling and eating area on the second.

“We added a two-tale glass box onto a bucolic cottage, in essence,” Ensminger explained.

A home with an sudden history

This is not the first time the property was significantly altered. The composition was crafted in the early 1800s and served as a 2½-tale horse barn on a thoroughbred racehorse farm owned by John Wickham, the lawyer who defended Aaron Burr through his demo for treason. “Before that, the land was aspect of the Tuckahoe Plantation,” explained Ralph Higgins, whose terrific-aunt, Ellen Harvie Smith, bought a 50-acre part of the horse farm around 80 yrs back.

The horse barn was unstable by the late 1940s, so Smith had all but the reduced degree dismantled. She stored the bricks onsite, however, so when Higgins’s sister moved to Virginia from Florida in the early 1990s, he prompt she use the bricks to make a house atop the surviving portion of the barn.

“We took the original brick and crafted it up 2½ stories, like the barn,” explained Higgins, a landscape architect whose tasks involve doing the job on the masterplan for the Innsbrook Company Heart.

Later on, Higgins’s sister added a wing on to the house that increased the property’s selection of bedrooms from two to a few.

Ensminger and Lightfoot used six months tweaking the style and design, and it took a different yr to establish the addition. Function wrapped up in 2020.

Nowadays, the addition is stuffed with daylight, and the views of the meadows and trees are impressive – just as Lightfoot envisioned. It is also an apparently aggressive blending of old and new. Whilst the addition’s constructing elements are generally Fashionable, Ensminger employed aged bricks for some of the construction as a way to tie collectively the previous and new.

Inside, the furnishings are eclectic, with relatives heirlooms, art and household furniture mixed in with Modern and Modern parts. Between the older products: paintings by Lightfoot’s grandfather, Herbert Boekl a stitching machine after owned by Lightfoot’s mom and a Biedermeier cabinet that had to be restored right after the Nazis destroyed it in Globe War II.

“It’s Modern day, but it’s heat,” Lightfoot said.

Intrigued in seeing the Lightfoots’ dwelling in man or woman?  You are in luck.  Modern-day Richmond, a nonprofit business that organizes tours of Fashionable-design residential and industrial structures, will host a tour of the property on June 15.

“Modern Richmond’s goal is to share large-high-quality Contemporary layout with the Better Richmond community, and this property is striking,” claimed Mimi Sadler, an historic architect and Contemporary Richmond’s system director. “Dan is very gifted, and I adore the way his style combines the old and the new.”

For more data, pay a visit to modernrichmond.org.

 Editor’s notice:  This is an installment in the “Great Homes of Richmond” series.