Kristen Olson

Kristen Olson is an architectural historian, certified industrial rope access technician, and licensed drone pilot. Her work in the private sector involves the characterization and documentation of difficult-to-access buildings and structures throughout the United States and abroad. She has worked on a variety of investigation projects, from Boston's Trinity Church (a National Historic Landmark) to a remote concrete dam in the North Cascades.

Olson is actively involved in the continued development of the TPAS(R) direct-to-digital documentation system and 3D modeling from imagery captured using unmanned aerial vehicles, and she has written and presented on these topics. She is a member of the Association for Preservation Technology International Technical Committees on Materials and Documentation and serves as Municipal Historian for the Village of Freeville, New York.

Olson received her B.A. in studio art from Colby College in 2003 and her M.A. in Historic Preservation Planning from Cornell in 2009.

Related News

Classes (Selected)

  • CRP 5640 Building Materials ConservationA survey of the development of building materials in the United States, chiefly during the 19th and early 20th centuries, and a review of the measures that might be taken to conserve them.¬†Students prepare a Historic Structure Report (HSR) on a property of their own choosing to be given to the site owner. The HSR includes historical research, a detailed written description, building condition analysis, recommendations for treatment, and a cost estimate.¬†¬†

Exhibitions and Presentations (Selected)

  • "Accelerating UAVs For Heritage Documentation" and "Characterizing Historic Structures With UAV-Based Photogrammetry and Infrared Thermography," Association for Preservation Technology Heritage Documentation and Survey Using Drones Workshop presented by the Delaware Valley and Washington, DC, Chapters, Havre de Grace, Maryland (November 2018)
  • "Combining hands-on inspection, nondestructive evaluation, and drone-based data acquisition in the investigation of the Soldiers' and Sailors' Memorial Monument" (coauthor), National Center for Preservation Technology and Training Digital Documentation Summit, New Orleans, (April 2017)
  • "Drones: The Good, the Bad and the Unknown" (co-presenter), Association for Preservation Technology International Documentation Technologies Workshop presented by the Delaware Valley Chapter in Philadelphia (March 2016), and by the Northeast Chapter in Boston (September 2016)

Publications (Selected)

  • "High Hopes: Drone Inspections for Buildings and Structures," Cross-Sections: Magazine for the Structural Engineers Association of New York, vol. 22, no. 4 (forthcoming)
  • "3D Models Take Off With Drone Technology," coauthored with Kelly Streeter, Applicator, vol. 38, no. 3 (summer 2016)