1504 NW 61st Terrace
Designed by a faculty member at UF’s College of Architecture and built in 1962, this house has survived with many remarkable period features intact. The architect was Dean Bryant Vollendorf, a UF architecture professor.
The house displays characteristics of the Mid-Century era, such as exposed concrete block as an architectural element, scored concrete floors, extensive built-in storage and the original teak veneer kitchen cabinets with tapered legs. Extensive windows allow for the constant interplay of natural light as the day changes, and clerestory windows are positioned to take advantage of cross breezes in the spring and fall.
Positioned off the dining room with a light well, the kitchen retains the original cabinetry as mentioned above. The separate dining room offers sweeping views of the pool and rear landscaping, and features an original custom light fixture.
The bedrooms feature the original scored concrete floors, and the master opens on to an enclosed garden space. The master bath looks over a garden as well, with exterior access from both points.
Situated on 1.36 acres and landscaped to provide privacy from the street, 1504 has a mature greenscape that can be viewed from any of the rooms in the house. With courtyard gardens off the master bedroom and bathroom, an interior garden in the great room, and beds around the pool and exterior, any gardener would have a large canvas with which to work. Much of the landscaping is done with native plants, including palms, azalea and the American variant of tea olive. This makes for riotous color in the spring and hardy drought tolerance for our region.
As mentioned, 1504 was designed by Dean Bryant Vollendorf during his tenure at the University of Florida as a professor of architecture. Commissioned and built in 1962, the design represents an early effort from Vollendorf, who worked on the project with John Randall McDonald, a Wisconsin architect who studied with Frank Lloyd Wright. After leaving UF, Vollendorf went to Oklahoma, where he lived and worked, producing what some have come to refer to as Prairie Modern, popular designs that were built throughout the Midwest in the period. For those interested in learning more about the architect, a good resource is the Friends of Vollendorf Facebook page.
Dean Bryant Vollendorf, in an undated photo.
While in Gainesville, Vollendorf also designed a veterinary clinic on 13th Street. Some of the drawings were located in the UF archives by members of Gainesville Modern, Inc.