VT Integrated Architecture Wins Award

he Vermont Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) at their recent annual meeting. The award was given for the transformation of an old milking parlor into a contemporary writer’s studio.

Long out-of-use farm buildings are a common sight throughout Vermont. Yet, on a pristine, historic farmstead in Cornwall, one unassuming farm building has become a contemplative writing space that recognizes and honors its agricultural past. The Writer’s Studio was completed in September of 2012.

The nearly 500-square-foot Writers Studio building received a new foundation, insulation, and new window openings, and features two levels – a main floor and a moveable loft. The loft moves by way of a hand crank fashioned out of a salvaged dairy barn stanchion and farm equipment gears, allowing the writer to take advantage of changing light conditions and views. Like an old-school rolling library ladder, the loft also permits access to upper level bookshelves.

The AIA-Vermont Award Jury recognized VIA’s “imagination, ingenuity, and technical virtuosity” in the restoration of the space, noting that “the new hardware associated with the sliding mezzanine is simple, thoughtful, familiar but clearly innovative, and even playful.”

Andrea Murray and Ashar Nelson formed VIA in 2011. The firm strives to design delightful spaces that benefit communities and honor their respective environments.