350 Circle Lane

Year of award: 
2008
Award category: 
Rehabilitation, Adaptive Re-use
Restoration architect: 
Wiss Janney Elstner Associates

The homeowners rehabilitated the remains of one of four ravine-spanning bridges on the former grounds of the Cyrus H. McCormick, Jr. estate, Walden.  Three of the bridges still exist. Two are on Walden Lane and the third and largest is the Walden~Bluff’s Edge Bridge, saved from demolition and restored with funds raised by the Preservation Foundation in 1998. Although this fourth bridge was deteriorated and razed in the 1950s, the limestone abutments and bridge approach remained hidden beneath decades of overgrowth in the owners’yard.  Working with Wiss Janney Elstner Associates, the engineering firm responsible for rehabilitating the other three bridges, and Lester’s Material Services, 30 to 50 tons of limestone were removed and reassembled to return the structure to its original condition as closely as possible.  The former bridge approach is now an enchanting paver patio on the edge of the ravine, terminated by a row of concrete balusters identical to those on the sides of the restored Walden Lane bridges.