HQ Steven McQuillin & Associates, Building Preservation Consultants
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Current Advocacy Projects

Breuer Tower

Steve McQuillin was one of the first people to advocate saving this 1971 downtown Cleveland building, the only tall building of renown Early Modern architect Marcel Breuer (1902-81).  Cuyahoga County initially planned to demolish it for a new county office center, but those plans have been abandoned and, when the economy improves, a developer plans to transform it into a hotel and apartments, using federal preservation incentives. 

The Cleveland Museum of Art


Advocacy began in 2000 when plans were released showing museum expansion that would completely encase the 1971 North Wing, designed by Marcel Breuer and Hamilton Smith. McQuillin wrote a letter to all board members, had articles published in the Plain Dealer and Free Times advocating the preservation of this Early Modern landmark and obtained letters of support from DOCOMOMO (the Committee on Documentation and Conservation of Monuments of the Modern Movement) and nationally known architect Robert A. M. Stern.

The museum’s current expansion plan, developed by architect Rafael Vinoly, does save the Breuer wing, but attachments to the north, east and west ends of the 1916 Neoclassical original building compromise its character.  
In letters and articles, McQuillin has advocated the plan be revised to address these preservation concerns. 

Seneca County Courthouse
For the past several years, Steve McQuillin has worked to help save this historic 1884 building designed by E. E. Myers, architect of the Michigan, Texas and Colorado state capitols.  He helped secure $2 million in state preservation funding through applying for an Ohio Preservation Tax Credit and enabled the project to qualify for the federal rehabilitation tax credit.  He testified several; tierms before the county commissioners and helped in efforts to publicize the issue.  The building has been saved but awaits actual rehabilitation.

Elyria High School Washington Building
McQuillin was hired by Elyria City Schools in 2000 to help develop a plan for the future of the Washington Building, a Richardsonian Romanesque style building dating from 1894.  In May 2007 voters approved a bond issue to construct a new high school on the site and make the historic Washington Building its centerpiece.  Since that time, McQuillin consulted on the plans for the school system, helped with a $2 million state preservation tax credit, although a later rules change prevented its use here.  Nevertheless, this project can serve as a model for other cities that preserved historic school buildings can continue to function as part of state-of-the-art educational facilities. Cleveland Public Square

New Cleveland Public SquareIn 1998, Steven McQuillin had published a plan to restore Cleveland’s central park to its original form. In 1867 the 10-acre park was divided into four quadrants, reducing its usable park space by two-thirds. Now that the city is gaining an increasing downtown residential population, there is a need for a real park-like space in the city. Restoring Public Square would be a tremendous asset to the efforts to revitalize downtown Cleveland. McQuillin developed a perspective rendering of how Public Square could look.

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Past Advocacy Involvement

Elyria Methodist Church 

Working to save historic landmarks and promote concepts consistent with historic preservation has been a prime goal of this firm.  Steven McQuillin’s first advocacy project was the unsuccessful effort, at age 14, to persuade the Elyria Methodist Church to save a historic castle-like mansion from replacement by a church classroom annex.  In writing and meetings, he pointed out that the old building could serve those same uses more cheaply and that it was a beautiful local landmark, worthy of preservation.  But that was the 1960s and preservation was not high on the radar screen. 

Peters Hall - Oberlin College

As an Oberlin College student, Steve McQuillin advocated the preservation of Peters Hall, an 1885 Richardsonian Romanesque style landmark threatened with demolition to make way for the new college library.  He published a report detailing the rich history of this landmark and how it could be adapted for college purposes.  The library was shifted to a new site and the building was later rehabilitated. McQuillin also worked to preserve Westervelt Hall, an 1874 Victorian Gothic former schoolhouse that was later rehabilitated into the Union Center for the Arts.  He worked to obtain a federal grant to save Johnson House, an 1885 mansion that had been converted to a college dormitory.  The college had plans to demolish the frame structure, but Steve McQuillin obtained a grant from the Ohio Historic Preservation Office to paint the exterior in historic colors and that exterior work so transformed the building that it has become one of the college’s finest dormitories and has since been completely rehabilitated.

Ohio Statehouse

As a graduate student at Columbia University, McQuillin performed detailed research on the Ohio Statehouse and published a report in 1976 that advocated for the preservation of the 1900 Judiciary Annex, which was then threatened with demolition.  He also spoke to a state senate committee on the need to restore the Statehouse itself and has lectured on the subject.  Beginning in 1990 he advocated for a more respectful approach to the building’s restoration, including the publication of numerous articles.  As a result, a proposed atrium connector was scaled back and a more professional approach to the restoration of the Statehouse and Judiciary Annex was adopted.  The annex, once imminently threatened with demolition, is now restored as the senate office building.

Elyria Town Hall

In Elyria, Steve McQuillin worked to save the old town hall, an Italianate structure dating from 1867, from demolition in the 1970s.  In the 1980s, he developed a plan to incorporate the facility into a new city hall. The city is nearing completion on this project in 2003.

Current Projects Past Involvement 

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Headquarters (Dover Farm) | New House at 31232 Detroit Rd | Preservation Projects | Preservation Advice
Advocacy Projects | Employment | Cape Hatteras Vacation Cottages for Weekly Rental | Our Team
Theatre Restoration | Tax Credit Projects | Tax Credit Rules | Newsletter | Resume | Contact Us | Home