VINCENT THOMAS "VINNY" PETRARCA (1972-)
Petrarca was born in Brooklyn NY and went to high school in Charlotte. He interned at Gunn Hardaway then attended the NCSU College of Design, receiving a BEDA in 1994 and Bachelors of Architecture in 1999. He worked for Frank Harmon from 1993 to 2003 and left to start Tonic Design and Tonic Construction with Charles Holden and Heather Washburn. Tonic became a leading North Carolina design-build firm with many design awards.
Petrarca has been an adjunct Architecture faculty member at North Carolina State University’s College of Design for many years, receiving a 2013-2014 Faculty Design Award from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture for the design of Crabill Modern, below.
His wife, architect Katherine Hogan, joined the firm in 2008 and became co-owner. In 2013, Petrarca and Hogan were named Residential Architect magazine’s “Rising Stars” out of all young firms in the nation.
All of the houses below were built by Tonic Construction unless otherwise noted.
2004 - The Petrarca House, aka Honeymoon Cottage, overlooking Crabtree Creek, 4219 Arbutus Drive, Raleigh. 1700 square feet. Cost: an amazingly low $140,000. The sleek, modern kitchen was constructed for about $1700, using an IKEA cabinet system and concrete and Galvalume steel countertops. Won an AIANC Award and a SARC Award. Featured in the November/December 2003 issue of DWELL as well as on the cover of 25 Houses Under 1500 Square Feet. Photos by James West.
2004 - The David Hill Addition, 2803 Wayland Drive, Raleigh NC. Designed by David Hill. Built by Tonic Construction.
2004 - The Rod McCowan House, 222 Tennwood Court, Durham. This incredible home took four years from start to finish and is one of the Triangle's largest Modernist houses. It took so long due to numerous design changes plus squabbles between the architects. Frank Harmon basically designed the exterior. Petrarca and Charles Holden, both of whom by then had left Harmon's firm, did the rest of the project. Petrarca’s Tonic Construction and Sigmon Construction built it. Four bedrooms, 6456 square feet, four full bathrooms, two half baths. Was on the market and essentially abandoned from 2008-2011. Sold in 2011 to Madhu Beriwal who did a restoration designed by Ellen Cassilly.
2006 - The John and Molly Chiles Residence, 4217 Laurel Ridge Drive, Raleigh. 3,800 square feet on 1.83 acres. Petrarca and Charles Holden designed this unique home on the steel frame of a previous residence left in disrepair for 15 years. James Franklin Taylor, a product design graduate of the NCSU School of Design, built the original frame and house in the 1970’s with his buddy Ligon Flynn. Taylor constantly changed things, taking apart whole sections and rebuilding (top photo). He even had a room like a hovercraft that would "float" around the steel frame. Most of the time, however, the house was in tarps. It was constantly under construction from Taylor's tinkering. Taylor decided to move to the Bahamas and lived in a Frank Harmon house. After Taylor's death, his wife sold the land to the Chiles. Petrarca did the construction. Structural Engineer, Richard Kaydos-Daniels. Second photo by Leilani Carter. Other photos by James West.
2006 - The Kevin and Melissa Collins Residence, 3920 Woodbine Road, Raleigh. 3814 square feet on 2.15 acres. Won an AIA Triangle award in 2007. Structural Engineer, Richard Kaydos-Daniels.
2008 - The Doug and Ann Sharpe Renovation, 401 Silver Hill Road, Concord MA. Built by SD Fitzgerald of Concord. The principal architect was Heather Washburn. Robby Johnston was a project designer. A renovation and reorganization of a 1960's house, bottom photo. Top three photos by Anton Grassl/Esto.
2008 - The Jim Schafer Residence, South Landing Lot #6, Leasburg, NC. Unbuilt.
2009 - The Bobby and Kristi Walters Residence, aka the GREENvilleHOUSE, 2231 Lexington Farm Rd, Greenville NC. 4042 total square feet, integrating photovoltaic technology, solar hot water, and geothermal HVAC systems. This is the first LEED Silver Modernist house in North Carolina. Commissioned 2005. Features a combination of storefront floor-to-ceiling and aluminum-framed operable and non-operable windows; maple built-ins and cabinets designed by Tonic; maple floors; and ipe decks. Project architect Robby Johnston made sure all the wood was FSC-certified, which meant educating every subcontractor and supplier.
The house was an Architectural Record Home of the Month and a News and Observer Home of the Month. Also won a 2010 AIANC COTE Environmental Design Award. Roof by Pickard Roofing. Structural Engineer, Richard Kaydos-Daniels. Photos by Todd Lanning, Gravitation Studios. Part of the TMH Downeast Tour, March 2011. Won 3rd Place from the Jury in the 2012 George Matsumoto Prize.
2009 - The Tonic-Petrarca-Hogan Home/Office Renovations, aka Live/Work, 209 Bickett Boulevard, Raleigh. The abandoned commercial building was first converted into an office for Tonic. Then the back was changed into a 300sf apartment for Petrarca and his wife/business partner, Katherine Hogan. Then the apartment was doubled in size as the office space decreased. Sold in 2013. Won a 2014 AIA North Carolina Design Award.
2009 - The Blount and Lenoir Street Condos, Raleigh. Unbuilt.
2010 - The George Smart and Eleanor Stell Residence, 5409 Pelham Road, Durham, on the lakefront site of a 1960's ranch (left bottom photo). Comissioned 2008. 2400 square feet. Ted Arendes was the project archtiect. Consulting architect, David Hill. Photos by Todd Lanning, Ted Arendes, and George Smart. Structural Engineer, Richard Kaydos-Daniels. Won a 2010 AIA North Carolina Merit Award. Won a 2012 AIA Triangle Honor Award. Won the 1st place 2014 George Matsumoto Prize Jury Award.
2010 - The C. Scott Mabry Renovation, 2412 Wentworth, Raleigh. The original house was built in 1977. Sold to Greg and Lisa Raschke in 2013.
2011 - The Alex Cedeño House, aka the James River House, 9151 James Riverwatch Drive, Richmond VA. Built by Shearman Associates. Structural Engineer, Richard Kaydos-Daniels. Part of the TMH Modern Richmond Tour 2011, bottom photo. Sold in 2015 to Alejandro Cedeno.
2011 - The John and Stacy Crabill House, aka Crabill Modern, 5204 Margon Place, Hillsborough NC. Structural Engineer, Richard Kaydos-Daniels. Part of the TMH Hillsborough Modernist Tour 2011. Part of the AIA Triangle Tour 2012.
2012 - The Todd and Laura Oxner Residence, 286 East Rocky Top Trail, Seven Devils NC. David Hill, consulting architect. Commissioned 2011. Built by Vincent Properties Construction. Plumbing by Thunder Hill Plumbing.
2014 - The Abby and Sean Ross Renovation, 120 Hawthorne Road, Raleigh NC. Photos by Raymond Goodman.
2014 - The Matt McKeever and Tina Horstmann House, 115 Eastwood Lake Drive, Chapel Hill NC. Unbuilt.
2014 - The Mark and Lesley Zimmerman House, Orange County NC. Unbuilt. The owners ended up buying the house next door.
2015 - The Henry and Janni Cone House, aka ShopHouse, 14800 Creedmoor Road, Wake Forest NC.
2015 - The Jing Li and Wolfgang Liedtke House, 106 Blue Dog Lane, Durham NC. Built by Bob Aiello.
Sources include: Jim Schafer, John Chiles, Sally Bugg, Kenneth Hobgood, Phil Szostak, Ted Arendes, Katherine Hogan, Vinny Petrarca, Ilsy Chappell, Heather Washburn, Davis Hammer, Robby Johnston, Custom Home Magazine.