Sunday, June 8, 2008

Patterson Schools' Last Days

There is a pretty good little thread going on at Dayton Most Metro on Patterson School.

This was a vocational school built on about a half block downtown, probably in the early 1950s., and will be torn down this summer.
Architecturally it's pretty banal, but is one of those background buildings that are individually pretty average, yet contribute to the urban fabric. In this case the building helped maintain a street wall on First Street, and the design did respect the context to some degree, via the curved corner at First & St Clair.

The First and Jefferson corner was pretty brutal, though. Yet, still, the concrete frame is exposed, adding some visual interest to the blank brick facade.
Though high modernism of this era was very stripped and minimalist, in provincial citys like Dayton things weren't as aesthetically doctrinaire. In this case there actually was an attempt at facade composition and articulation, particularly at the entrance, with the slight bow on the wall with the band windows, done in stone veneer, and the window wall on the stair well.
The composition of the windows isn't too bad either. In some ways this is similar to the lower part of the Talbot Tower.
...and in the background one can see the building's fate: open space. There seems to be some confusion as to whether this will be a parking lot or just a vacant lot with grass ground cover. Whatever the surface treatment, you will be able to see the backs of the following buildings on Second and Jefferson Streets from this angle: Aquarius, the beauty college, Dayton Stencil, and the DVAC building and its neighbor, and maybe the DHC and print shop on Jefferson.

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