Maintaining The History Of Fort Riley

February 27, 2014

Nestled in the central Flint Hills between Manhattan and Junction City, Kansas, Fort Riley has a proud and rich history in the U.S. Army. Named in honor of Major General Bennett C. Riley, who led the first military escort along the Santa Fe Trail, Fort Riley was established in 1853 as a military post to protect the movement of people and trade over the Oregon-California and Santa Fe trails. Fort Riley is home to the U.S. Army's First Infantry Division, proudly known as the Big Red One, a unit distinguished for being first on the beaches at Normandy in World War II (WWII) and the first division called to fight in the Vietnam War. At Fort Riley, soldiers receive training and support to ensure readiness for battlefield deployment.

The homes in Fort Riley’s Historic Main Post neighborhood are also notable. With the oldest home dating back to 1855, this community is a designated National Register District and predominantly features limestone buildings constructed of stone quarried from the surrounding Flint Hills.

When Corvias Military Living began management of the on-post housing at Fort Riley in July 2006, we began an intensive program to upgrade the historic homes to the standards of modern living. The exterior renovations primarily involved general maintenance and any necessary repairs to preserve the exterior of the homes, including installation of new storm windows, as well as the inspection and repair of copper gutters and downspouts. Interior improvements included installation of efficient HVAC systems, new fixtures and finishes, upgrading bedrooms and bathrooms to improve living standards and compete with off-base housing options. The typical rehabilitation scope included moving the laundry room to the first floor when possible, adding a first-floor bathroom, creating a master suite with spacious walk-in closets and the addition of a master bath.

By using best practices to maintain a home’s historic nature, such as finding new materials to emulate historic finishes and upgrading features to meet the demands of modern living, Corvias has found success in maintaining these special homes. Today, Corvias is nearing completion of the rehabilitation of 253 historic homes at Fort Riley with unique features preserved for generations to come.