Gravenstraat 6 was built in 1774 by master-carpenter Francois van Groeneveld. The owner was Jean Nepveu, then governor of Suriname. It was by far the grandest house of the colony. It contained elaborately carved interior panelling. For more than two centuries the house dominated Gravenstraat. Until 1991, when things started to go wrong. A fire started in the attic and the roof burned down. Luckily the rest of the house remained undamaged, except for water damage. A temporary roof was placed by the architect Philip Dikland, and in 1996 a complete restoration had started up (architect ARTO / mr. H. Jankipersadsingh). But then again disaster struck ; on august 2, 1996 a fire that had begun in the neighbouring building jumped over and completely destroyed the house. Since then, the lot has remained empty. Now (2014) there are plans to rebuild the house, but it is uncertain if these will be carried out.
The documentation needed to rebuild the house is not complete, but it can be done. This model was made as a proof test.
As a result of the fire, heritage documentation policy in Suriname changed. More emphasis was laid upon full technical documentation up to the smallest details, so that - in case of fire - buildings can be reconstructed. Also, a technical heritage database was started. It can be visited at http://www.suriname-heritage-guide.com/
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