Preservation Award for Renovation

Bozeman Daily Chronicle covers the Historic Preservation Award for Excellence for a Camma-Q project in “Couple garners preservation award for renovation of stately Bozeman home:”

Behind the stately facade of Susan MacGrath and Martin Zabaleta’s historic home on Bozeman’s South Third Avenue lies the solution to the dilemmas of contemporary living. It is a house with space for work, play, kids, dogs, entertaining, relaxing, reading, cooking, privacy, formality and fun. Add to that a premiere location close to schools, restaurants and good friends, the house is nearly perfect.

“It’s a beautiful house with great character in a good location, but it has taken a lot of work and we’re not finished yet,” admitted MacGrath.

With an extensive remodel nearly complete, the couple has managed to enhance the presence of an already outstanding residence by combining the pragmatism of modern lifestyle and old world whimsy. Yet owning a home built in 1900 was never a dream for MacGrath, who lived in formal old houses growing up in New York. She was wary that this house’s majestic three-story Queen Anne/Colonial Revival style architecture could overpower her family’s own laid back way of life.

Keeping that in mind, Ben Lloyd of Comma-Q Architects set out on a 14-month renovation project that preserved, expanded and updated the 5,500-square-foot home. The goal was to keep the classic Victorian period detailing, such as the dark oak paneling and molding, but to create comfortable, open living space that would be as appropriate for the couple’s three-year-old daughter to play in as it would be to have an adult cocktail party.

“I think there is a lot of flexibility within historic architecture,” said Lloyd, “You need to be true to the building in order to restore and preserve its history, but there has to be room for interpretation or else you create museums.”