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Eichler In Palo Alto Being Demolished!

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Joined: Nov 5 2007

Eichler In Palo Alto is Being Demolished.
All the Redwood Panels/beams cabinets /hydronic heating system /Hot water heater Garage Door/ Garage Door opener/Carpets/fruit trees/Counter Tops /Electrical /Fixtures/sinks/bath tubs/outdoor BBQ/Fire Place/Doors interiors & Exterior/ shower door / exterior siding etc are for sale at token prices.
Please contact
Mike
408-2026794 cell : :)

Demolish date is with in a week!

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Joined: Jul 6 2006

how sad...

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Joined: Apr 2 2003

I thought people might be interested in a followup on this thread.

First off, I met Mike and have to say I was pleasantly surprised. He is not the stereotypical developer we all fear. No one likes to see an Eichler torn down, but they are not all going to survive into the next century. What most of us hope, I suspect, is that at least some tracts remain intact to preserve the history of the man that brought affordable architecture to the masses. And, where homes are demolished and rebuilt, that the replacement homes are sensitive to the style and lifestyle of the neighborhood they join.

To his credit, Mike has taken the time to meet the neighbors to get a sense of what will work in the neighborhood. When meeting his neighbors, they advised him the home was an Eichler and suggested he post to this board as others might benefit from the materials he was planning to remove. And he took the time to do so. As anyone who has ever tried to offer material for re-use, it can be a time-consuming and thankless task. (But thank you to those you have from those of us who have benefited.)

The building permit indicates a single story with double garage has been requested. Mike did say to me that he is open to any idea for restoration/renovation that makes sense in terms of neighborhood and economics. My observation is that the area seems to be under a fair amount of re-development already. It is likely only a matter of time until some of these homes are taken down. Sad, perhaps, but true.

I think Mike expected people would be excited to reclaim/resuse some of the material he was planning to remove. And I think he was a bit taken aback by the response "how sad". So Mike took the time to ask me what concerns Eichler owners had about people building new homes/demolishing old homes in their neighborhood. I said beyond preserving historically significant California homes, a lot of the concern was that new buildings would be McMansions with little design relationship to the neighborhood and second stories towering over neighbors' backyards and gardens.

So far, he seems to get the idea of scale (single story)--which is great. It's a huge lot so I do think it will have a larger footprint. Since Mike has said he is open to suggestions, I, myself, would strongly recommend a modern architecture because it would be both compatible from a design perspective and desirable from a market perspective. There are lots of neo-classical, mediterranean, etc. high end homes around. But I think there is very little in the way of clean modern lines in Northern California homes these days. And I believe there is a pent-up demand for them.

Perhaps Mike might want to take a look at CA Modern's article on this growing modern market:

http://www.eichlernetwork.com/desert_chron3.html

Cheers.
Jake

eichfan at rawbw dot com

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Joined: Apr 2 2003

Please see the new topic in Grab Bag Central "Calling owners/afficiondos of *early* Eichler homes". There I've described this house and am looking for some information from owners of this era of homes. Hope you can help.

Cheers.
Jake

eichfan at rawbw dot com

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Joined: Apr 2 2003

I've received some more information. Very interesting.

This tract of homes, called El Centro Gardens, is architecturally significant. It was the second Eichler tract to be designed with Ashen & Allen and dates to 1950.

That year, Redwood City's Atherwood and Palo Alto's El Centro Gardens, Green Gables Addition, and Greer Park - were collectively honored by Architectural Forum as "Subdivision of the Year." With their ground-breaking floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the back garden, post and beam construction, redwood inside and out, and radiant heat, they were unlike anything buyers had ever seen.

It really would be a shame to lose a home of this significance. I'm thinking there might be buyers who would pay a premium for such a home restored (and perhaps with some site development like a guest house done in similar style but with modern conveniences). Don't know but it's definitely worth some careful thought. Any architects out there willing to offer up some suggestions?

You can read more about these early homes here:

http://www.eichlernetwork.com/ENStory9.html

Jake

eichfan at rawbw dot com

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