The Design Philosophy of Wessynton: Comments by Nicholas Pappas, FAIA

Adapted from an article in Byways Vol. XXVIII, No. 5 (Sept-Oct, 1995)

It will come as no surprise to anyone who has been fortunate enough to live in Wessynton that it is an award-winning community. Now, however, thanks to architect and neighbor Linda Michael of 3002 Wessynton Way, what most of us have known for some time is now being formally and publicly recognized.

In an October 3, 1995 letter to the President of the Wessynton Homes Association, Dr. John W. Braymer. Executive Vice President of the Virginia Society of the American Institute of Architects (VSAIA), informed the community that the Board of Directors of the VSAIA had selected Wessynton as recipient of its Test of Time award. This award is made to recognize the lasting value of good architectural design (Please note Linda Michael's accompanying article on page 2.) In particular, buildings and neighborhoods such as Wessynton, to qualify for consideration for the award, must be at least twenty-five years old and must function in essentially the manner in which they were originally designed.

The Test of Time award will cap an evening of celebration on November 3, 1995 at The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Virginia. A 7:00 PM buffet reception in the museum’s Marble Hall will be followed by the Society’s Honors and Awards ceremony in the museum auditorium. In addition to the Test of Time Award, other awards and honors to be presented include: The William C. Noland Medal; the Architecture Medal for Virginia Service; Distinguished Achievement Awards; the T. David Fitz-Gibbon Architecture Firm Award; and the Award for Preservation.

William C. Noland was one of the five original members of the Virginia AIA. Along with his fellow members, Clarence A. Neff, Philip N. Stern, Frank C. Baldwin, and Benjamin F. Mitchell, William C. Noland founded the first AIA chapter in Virginia.

Attending the Awards ceremony in Richmond will be Association President Jim Poole and his wife, Ginger, ARC Chairperson Linda Ely and husband, Jim Crouch, former Association president, nominator and AIA Fellow, Linda Michael, and Mr. Yerkes, now 84 years young, of the architectural firm of Deigert & Yerkes, original architects of our Wessynton community.