Erika Howsare



Photo: Stephen Barling

Reading outside the box: Albemarle’s Northside Library caters to a modern crowd

The new Northside Library, on Rio Road, says anything but “Shhhh.” From the outside, it’s positively jaunty, with aqua-blue and goldenrod-yellow accents dressing up the brick exterior, and surprising diagonals playing against the verticals of corrugated metal. One’s eyes travel to the tall entranceway and the single word, spelled in midcentury-style metal letters, on the […]

Photo: Andrea Hubbell

Subtle and simple: In neutral shades, a kitchen for the moment

Buildings reflect priorities. In 1949, when Jennifer Greenhalgh’s house on Park Street was built, kitchens were not the centerpieces they’ve become today. She and her husband Blake bought the colonial-style dwelling in 2008 and immediately set about making the kitchen more relevant to their contemporary lifestyle. “The kitchen was much smaller,” she remembered, standing with […]

Architect Jim Rounsevell captured square footage from the existing dining room to create two separate dining areas—one formal and one informal—in his minimalist kitchen remodel. Thus, the space is flexible for family dinners or parties with friends. Photo: Courtesy Jim Rounsevell

First and last: A well-used kitchen gets its due

The earliest image Jim Rounsevell and Carol O’Connor have of their house, from shortly after it was built in 1920, includes food. The aerial shot shows chickens and pigs behind the house, along with rows of garden veggies. Almost a century later, the current owners love cooking and entertaining; food is important in their lives. […]

Photo: Michael Bowles

Mix and serve: Scaling up history in a salvaged house

Everybody talks about marrying old and new, but there are different ways to do it. You’ve got your fixer-upper farmhouses, into which you can insert contemporary elements like stainless steel dishwashers. You’ve got your new builder homes that nod to tradition with way too much crown molding. Here is something totally different, and very unusual. […]

Photo: Andrea Hubbell

Clean slate: Taking a kitchen from flood to flow

There’s nothing like a flood to rearrange priorities. Soon after Andrea and Brian Hubbell closed on their Rugby neighborhood house last March, the supply line to their kitchen sink gave up the ghost, spraying a geyser at the ceiling. Because the Hubbells weren’t yet living in the house—a 1950s brick structure—they didn’t discover the problem […]

Photo: Stephen Barling

Scene setter: The curtain rises on a fresh Live Arts

More than a decade ago, three of Charlottesville’s signature arts organizations got a beautiful new home—the City Center for Contemporary Arts, housing Live Arts theater, Lighthouse Studio, and Second Street Gallery. Yet, since 2003, the lobbies of the building—on floors one, two, and three —have been unfinished. “It was an awesome achievement—a very, very ambitious […]