Admiral Stephen Decatur House
Bucher/Borges Group (BBG) was the architect for the design-build team that conserved and renovated the 1818 Decatur House, first private home in Lafayette Square in front of the White House. The National Historic Landmark site owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation is occupied by the White House Historical Association. The attached Slave Quarters, which were added around 1840, are a rare existing example of urban slave housing.
The project had three major elements: 1) emergency exterior repairs, 2) conservation of the interiors of the main entertaining spaces, and 3) renovation of the Carriage House wing event facility. The weather damaged exterior repairs included masonry and window work, replacement of much of the slate roofing and all of the gutters and downspouts, along with extensive stucco repairs to the Slave Quarters. The interior conservation included all of the second floor finishes with subtle but dramatic visual changes. For example, the paint was carefully stripped from the window shutters and paneling to reveal the glowing original Tiger Maple millwork and the missing marble fireplace surrounds were found in the attic and reinstalled with damaged pieces replaced with matching new stone. The late 20th century Carriage House has an entirely new interior and a new porch with limestone columns. Oak Grove Restoration Company was the manager of the design-build team.