BAHA Preservation Awards 2010

Part Two


Stokes House

Rear addition (photos: Daniella Thompson, 2010)

Charles H. & Sadie G. Stokes House
1810 Blake Street
(Berkeley Home Bldg. Assn., developer, 1905–06)

This High-Peaked Colonial Revival house was one of several in this style built speculatively by Warren Cheney’s development company. The house was first owned by Charles H. Stokes, a salesman and later a manager in a grocery store. In the 1920s, it became the home of Hermon Rowland, a building contractor who, with his father Volney, built the Maybeck-designed Giesler House at 2577 Buena Vista Way.

The current owner, an artist, added new living space without compromising the historic appearance of the house. A new kitchen and the new master bedroom above it were constructed as a rear addition. Bathrooms were modernized, one of them ingeniously utilizing the space under the stairs for a bathtub. The rest of the house remains delighfully original.

View from dining room to new kitchen (photo: Daniella Thompson, 2010)


Scheeline House before (courtesy of Carolyn Van Lang)

Scheeline House after (photo: Carrie Olson, 2010)

Lester A. & Lanette H. Scheeline House
1988 Thousand Oaks Blvd.
(Douglas Campbell, 1923)

Built for a merchant in SF and Willows, this three-story stucco house resembled a bedraggled dowager when the current owners acquired it in late 2007. Previous owners had modified the house in 1950s and ’60s style, obscuring many of the original features, but architectural sleuthing revealed some Arts & Crafts features that could be used as models for rehabilitation. Embarking on a complete remodel and landscape project, the owners made it their mission to recreate the original Arts & Crafts ambiance, making use of and enhancing the house’s best features.

Living room windows before (courtesy of Carolyn Van Lang)

Living room windows after (photo: Daniella Thompson, 2010)

The remodel created a better stair connection from the main floor to the basement; an airy basement family room with French doors opening to an outdoor patio; larger windows toward the view of San Francisco; up-to-date kitchen and bathrooms; and details sympathetic to the Arts & Crafts style, manifest in the stair balusters, cabinetry, and tile.

The living room before (courtesy of Carolyn Van Lang)

The living room after (photo: Daniella Thompson, 2010)

Along with the upgrades, double-pane windows, sun tunnels and skylights, high-efficiency furnace and hot water heater were chosen to conserve energy without changing the look and feel of the architecture. New bays, architectural projections, brackets, and a new rear deck were added to bring the front and the rear of the house together stylistically. Several mature trees were brought to the site so that the landscape is not dwarfed by the house in size and in age. The new patio extends the living space into the outdoors.

New stairs to the basement

The new Arts & Crafts dining room
(photos: Daniella Thompson, 2010)




Before (courtesy of Gordon Commercial)

After (photo: Carrie Olson, 2010)

B. Schapiro Store Building
1854–1878 Euclid Avenue
(Hugh Chester White, 1926)

The one-block Northgate commercial district on Euclid Avenue was built in the 1920s, following the big Berkeley Fire. In 1926, developer B. Schapiro constructed a one-story, seven-store building at the corner of Euclid and Hearst Avenues. In the 1930s, the building passed into the hands of the Grodin family, who held onto it for more than seventy years. Over the decades, some of the more memorable tenants here included the Euclid Avenue Pharmacy (later Reid's), Euclid Book Company, Colonial Donuts, Rather Ripped Records, and Northside Books.

With the passage of time, the storefronts became increasingly derelict, developing a mishmash of different fašades—all ugly and blighted with graffiti. The sad state of neglect cast a pall on the entire commercial block. Neighbors despaired of ever seeing a change for the better.

Enter North Gate Partners, LLC, who acquired the property, now comprising two buildings, in October 2008. Led by John Gordon, they had the vision to renovate and re-tenant their acquisition while retaining its original dimensions and historic features. The renovated storefronts preserve or replicate the charming clerestory windows and have been enhanced with a rich palette of colors in a design that brings out the architectural details. New store windows, glazed wooden doors, and attractive tile panels unify the fašade and convey an image of quality.

The result is warm, inviting, and crisp in appearance. Not only has the building been brought back from the brink, but the entire streetscape of this key commercial district has been enhanced, gaining charm and new life.



Before (photo: Daniella Thompson, 2004)

After (photo: Carrie Olson, 2010)

Downtown YMCA
2001 Allston Way
(Benjamin G. McDougall, 1910)

For more than a century, the Downtown Berkeley YMCA has been teaching people to swim and providing modestly priced, comfortable and safe accommodations for visitors in the heart of town. The Downtown Y also operates Berkeley’s largest fitness center.

In 2008, the Downtown YMCA undertook a major seismic upgrade to ensure the safety of the 17,000 Y users in the event of a major earthquake. The project included exterior rehabilitation of this City of Berkeley Landmark. With the completion of the work, the venerable Y looks fresh as the day it was built.

Part Three
Awards 2010

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