Chevron Splendor – 2024 WFOY: Members’ Choice and Best Historic Restoration

Universal Floors Inc. | Washington, D.C.


Entries in this category include all types of restoration projects, replacements, or repairs, in either a residential or commercial application. Entry into the Members’ Choice category is automatic. All floors entered into the contest are eligible, which includes all types of floors in all categories.


Since its construction in 1934, the Andrew Mellon Auditorium has stood as a national historic landmark, a testament to the grandeur of its era. When tasked with restoring its original 13,500 square-foot ornamental chevron floor, Universal Floors Inc. undertook a monumental project that required precision and expertise.

Completed in 1935, the auditorium featured a large-format chevron floor with diamond insets throughout, along with a stage floor. However, despite a new flooring installation in the same pattern by another company 20 years ago, the floor had deteriorated significantly, necessitating another replacement.

Every aspect of the restoration was planned carefully, beginning with the intricate hand-cutting of each board to a precise 45-degree angle. Custom curved borders and diamond inlays were created on-site, ensuring the highest caliber of historical accuracy and craftsmanship.

Laser technology and fishing lines were used to establish control lines essential for maintaining accuracy over long runs and around massive columns. The restoration of brass inlays on the stage further added to the floor’s historical integrity.

High-quality materials, including solid rift and quartered American white oak flooring, were selected and installed to complement the auditorium’s splendor. The finishing process, which included water-popping and double burnishing with hardwax oil, resulted in a beautiful luster that will continue to enhance the floor’s timeless appeal.

In preserving the Andrew Mellon Auditorium’s flooring, Universal Floors not only upheld a piece of architectural history, but also set a new standard for future historical renovation projects. This project was a true collaboration among seasoned professionals, highlighting the expertise and cooperative spirit of the wood flooring community, with the floor now standing as a shining example of craftsmanship and historical accuracy for generations to come.

Installation Method: Nail Down
Flooring Type: Solid
Flooring Finish: Professional Coatings Inc., Uno Coat Hardwax Uroil
Finish Sheen: Flat Low Luster
Species: White Oak
Mixed Media: Brass, Cork
Square Feet: 13,500 Field/1,000 Stage

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