Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Restoring the simple elegance of an H.H. Richardson masterpiece
Completed in 1880 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1970, this H. H. Richardson classroom building is distinguished by a façade with 60 different varieties of red molded brick as well as elaborate carved or gauged brick. Restoring its grandeur in a manner befitting its legacy as one of Richardson’s most revered designs and its prominent location in historic Harvard Yard required great care.
The dual project goals were to provide a weathertight envelope and to restore the building’s exterior in a manner consistent with the character of the original construction. All construction work conformed to the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties and was done in such a way as to minimize any impact on existing historic fabric.
The project scope included clay tile roof repairs with some replication required; masonry cleaning, repointing and restoration of the gauged brick panels; removing the wood windows, routing them out for double glazed units, restoring the sash and reinstallation of the windows; and paint analysis to determine the historic wood trim and sash colors.