Architect A. Quincy Jones - Page 6

Touring California with architect A. Quincy Jones—the remarkable modern designs of Jones & Emmons

ferne alma apartment in palo alto In a letter written to Ned Eichler in 1960, Jones expressed his philosophy in approaching the designs he provided to Eichler Homes: "The design of the Eichler Homes expresses a solution that simplifies living patterns in today's complicated society. The houses have been designed so that a functional and easy living pattern will be provided in a rich environment. The functional and easy living pattern carries throughout the house plan, then to the limits of the lot, and then a thoughtful arrangement of one house to another is carried through the total community. Doctors have stated that mental health can be affected adversely by an inadequate environment, just as much as physical healthy an inadequate water supply. There is no question that the aesthetic satisfaction of people of all ages in just as important as the material.

"The intellectual, social, and technical conditions of our age makes it imperative that we return to honesty in thought and feeling in architecture. There is no place in residential living for the 'cinderella' house which does not fill today's needs. The forms of architecture of today can not be the personal whims (or result of prejudices) of people, or architects, simply for innovation at all costs. The new forms of living provided in Eichler Homes are a logical result of today's scientific knowledge. The Eichler home is an architecture of logic with consideration for people's emotions—in other words, a rich architecture and a lasting architecture."




A Quincy Jones and Frederick Emmons each began their own practices in the immediate postwar, and each pursued reforms to small house design. Emmons joined with his brother, Donn, also an architect, to design a prototypical house for a competition held by the American Gas Association. Emmons worked for William Wurster and Allied Engineers before opening his own practice in 1946. He operated his own firm until joining with Jones in 1950. Together the partners were responsible for designs that, by Emmons' estimate, resulted in the construction of some 5,000 of Eichler's homes. Frederick Emmons retired from practice and moved to the Bay Area in 1972 where he lived until his death in 1998. Jones reverted his practice to a sole proprietorship, which continued until his passing in 1979.

For a more intensive study of the modern design career of A. Quincy Jones, don't miss 'A. Quincy Jones,' the newly published monograph from Phaidon Press. Authored by architect Cory Buckner, who contributed our Jones and Emmons California review here, the 250-page retrospective promises to be a welcome addition to every Eichlerphile's library.

a. quincy jones book cover

Southern California

• Mutual Housing Association (cooperative development of 150 homes, 32 originals remain today), 1948: Brentwood. Good examples located at 946 and 947 Stonehill Lane, 12404 Rochedale Lane, 860 Hanley Avenue.

• Southdown Estates, 1953: Bienveneda Avenue, Pacific Palisades.

• Jones & Emmons office, 1955: 12248 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles.

• Frederick E. Emmons residence, 1954: 661 Brooktree Road, Santa Monica.

• Shorecliff Towers apartments, 1961: 535 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica.

• University Research Library, 1964: Circle Drive North near Royce Drive, UCLA University, Westwood.

• Congregational Church of Northridge, 1959: 9659 Balboa Blvd., Northridge.

• St. Michael and All Angels Church, 1961: 3646 Coldwater Canyon Road, Studio City.

• Klein-Norton warehouse (now Ron Rezek Lighting), 1951: 4200 Sepulveda Boulevard, Culver City.

• Infrared, Inc., 1961: undetermined location, Carpinteria.

Northern California

• Ladera Project, 1952: built examples of designs on Aliso Way, Portola Valley.

• X-100 steel Eichler, 1956: 1586 Lexington Ave., San Mateo.

• Edgewood Plaza and Eichler offices, 1958: 1101 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto.

• Capehart Housing (aka McClellan Housing), 1957-'60: 3 miles north of and adjunct to McClellan Air Force Base (closed 2001), Sacramento.

• Duisenberg Medical Building (since renamed), 1958: undetermined location, Los Altos.

• Laguna Eichler high rise (and complex), 1962: 66 Cleary Court, San Francisco.

• Ferne-Alma Apartments, 1962: Ferne Avenue and Alma Street, Palo Alto.