Mercy, That’s a Pretty Floor!

By Scott Boylston

If this floor could talk, what a story it could tell.

Like a butterfly, it would tell stories, not only of its day-to-day existence, but of its dramatic transformation between 2 distinctly different lives it has lived. And like children in awe when they are first told that the weightless beauty of a butterfly was once a small, earthbound caterpillar, we can marvel at this floor for its own transformation…from a roof that was built in 1943, to a ‘new’ floor almost 70 years later.

But unlike a chrysalis, which conceals the details of the butterfly’s transformation, the details of this floor’s transformation can be shared for all to see.

Last week, after receiving tongue and groove panels that were deconstructed and denailed by volunteer teams, Dwayne Larson, owner of Larson Construction, remilled the roofing, and installed it as flooring in the community center for Mercy Housing’s public housing units on Pennsylvania Avenue. The floor will be sanded and finished in the next week.

Parts of the floor’s story have been told on this blog over the course of the last 12 months, as have projects that align with this particular set of collaborations. They can be found here, and here, and here, among other places.

But a more succinct synopsis goes like this:

Emergent Structures, and Thomas & Hutton, and NorSouth Construction, and C.H.S.A, and the City of Savannah’s Housing Department, and Mercy Housing, and RLH Development, and Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia, and Larson Construction, and StepUp Savannah, and a bunch of good-hearted and hearty volunteers all shared a vision…and worked slowly but surely toward that vision. With teamwork that vision has come to be reality.

The flooring continues up a hallway toward the entryway of the building, where the brick that was recently prepared by the board of Emergent Structures and a few volunteers will be laid. At some point in the future, the story of these material transformations will be told on the walls of the community center…we will keep you updated.

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