Citation of Merit
A Residential Design Citation of Merit is given for the restoration of Birch Knoll, designed by Philadelphia architect George Daub in 1949. Initially built for the President of Aronomink Golf Course, Birch Knoll occupies a picturesque spot alongside the 14th and 15th holes, showcasing its International Style design with panoramic views through expansive windows and an asymmetrical layout, blending glass, steel, stone, and wood. After years of neglect following a 2011 renovation, Birch Knoll found new custodians in 2017 who aimed to restore its original Midcentury Modern appeal. Lacking original drawings, in-depth research and selective demolition were conducted to ensure design interventions aligned with Daub's vision. The building envelope was a significant challenge, necessitating a complete overhaul to prevent water infiltration and restore the natural wood finish. The use of natural stone, walnut millwork, and faithful replication of original elements helped address material inconsistencies. Technological advancements were integrated without compromising the design intent. Birch Knoll's restoration ensures the residence remains a timeless and comfortable family home, ready for 21st-century living.
“This was clearly a labor of love. The long-term, careful waterproofing is especially appreciated in this instance.”
- Barbara Bestor, FAIA, 2023 Jury chair
“George Daub should be better known outside of Philadelphia. This beautifully done restoration gives his work the respect it deserves.”
Edmund and Sharon Gaffney
Architecture/Interior Design: k YODER design (Kevin Yoder, AIA, LEED AP); Construction: Baroni Building Company (Bud Baroni); Landscape Design: Hess Landscape Architects (Jason T. Kelso, RLA); Home Automation: Springboard Automation (Everett Katzen); Structural Engineering: Innovative Structural Engineers (Timothy Beaver, PE); Custom Cabinetry and Millwork: Craft-Maid (Dave Kershner); Photography: Jeffrey Totaro