NARRAGANSETT, R.I. – A seaside Victorian home dating to the 1800s in Narragansett will be the subject of a historic restoration to be documented by the PBS show “This Old House.”
The focus of the project is a Queen Anne Victorian home at the corner of Narragansett Avenue and Robinson Street. Originally built in 1887 when Narragansett first surged in popularity as a summer resort, the home had been abandoned for a few years and its condition has deteriorated.
Local Real Estate brokerage firm Lila Delman recently sold the property to new buyers who shared a vision to preserve the home.
Enter Sweenor Builders, which has announced it will lead a sweeping restoration of the home to address rot, deterioration and structural damage and preserve as much historic architectural value as possible.
The project is being completed to meet Narragansett Historic District Commission guidelines, and its story will be chronicled on the 42nd season of “This Old House,” produced by This Old House Ventures, LLC and presented on PBS by WGBH Boston.
Historic District Commission members also serve as house doctor consultants, a panel of historic construction experts giving free consultations on renovations, restorations or repairs.
Sweenor Builders was founded in 1989 and is based in Wakefield.
The firm first caught the attention of “This Old House” when the brand’s TV personality Tom Silva visited the shop in 2016 to meet with Jeff Sweenor about a custom home project on Ocean Road.
The company is looking forward to the new project, and the builders were observed working at the new location last week.
“This is a unique opportunity for us to fuse craftsmanship, modern utility, and neighborhood revitalization in one project,” Jeff Sweenor, president of Sweenor Builders, said. “Our team is deeply vested in creating a vibrant village in Narragansett, and we look forward to continuing our working relationships with the teams at This Old House and the Narragansett Historic District Commission to make a positive impact in one of our favorite neighborhoods.”
The updated design from Sweenor maintains period architectural details such as decorative columns and brackets, sawtooth and fishscale shingles, eyebrow siding details, a “rising sun” patterned clapboard gable, and more.
It also preserves windows, improves the foundation and footings, addresses the deteriorating porch and rotting roof and introduces a new addition which includes a two-car garage and mudroom on the first floor, and master suite on the second floor, to match the existing structure.
The Sweenor team has other prominent Narragansett restoration projects under its belt, including the renovation of Stone Lea, the 1884 Ocean Road home designated on the National Registry of Historic Places and designed by famed architectural firm of McKim, Mead & White.
Last year, Sweenor Builders was honored during the Narragansett Historic District Commission’s inaugural award ceremony for its re-imagination of four declining properties on Caswell Street.
This is the fifth time that Sweenor’s work will be featured on “This Old House,” and the second time while working in Narragansett.
Previous documented projects include Sweenor’s transformation of a Westerly ranch home in 2019, a renovation in Jamestown in 2018, and the 2017 and 2018 This Old House Idea Houses in East Matunuck and Narragansett, respectively.