However, that stability did not prevent some properties from gradually descending into disrepair. When Rogers first became involved with the project, 218 Lavaca was occupied by a small two-room stone house with a dilapidated wood frame addition in the rear. Rogers began by removing the addition and working to secure the original stone structure. Most likely built in 1873, this understated limestone structure became the formal and historic anchor for the project. The foundation walls were secured and the basement was renovated as a design studio. Above ground, the plaster that had encased the exterior stonework for decades was removed, revealing rough limestone masonry. The architect took a similar approach on the interior by exposing the structure to maximize interior volume as well as to highlight the historic construction techniques.
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Rogers constructed a new kitchen and bathroom wing that extends behind the original structure and maintains its overall width. Connected to the original architecture via a new internal basement stair, the addition reflects the elemental character of the existing stone house without overt stylistic references. Perpendicular to this wing is a somewhat larger bedroom wing that consists of a master bedroom, a guest bedroom, a bathroom, and a porch that opens onto an intimate, landscaped courtyard defined on its third side by a detached one-car garage. A low stone wall screens this courtyard from Lavaca Street, allowing it to be simultaneously read as a visual extension of the street while also denoting the space it encloses as private. While the project encompasses a number of elements (existing house, new addition, new garage, defined
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Texas Architect is the official publication of the Texas Society of Architects, each edition features recently completed projects and other...