Browse Exhibits (4 total)

Eichler Development Site Plans from the Oakland & Imada Collection


Claude Oakland joined the architectural office of Anshen & Allen in San Francisco in 1950. That year Joseph L. Eichler, the first major builder to engage the services of independent architectural firms, came to Anshen & Allen as a client. Soon thereafter, Oakland began serving as the principal designer for Eichler Homes, Inc. Oakland remained principal designer of subdivisions and subdivision houses at Anshen & Allen until 1960 when he left to start his own firm, Claude Oakland & Associates, and took over the Anshen & Allen Eichler account.

Oakland ended up devoting most of his career to Eichler and his various companies, developing along the way a unique kind of tract house that encouraged an informal life style and took advantage of California’s mild climate by permitting freer access to the outdoors. Structural elements such as exposed wood posts, beam framing with tongue and groove decking, and radiant heated slab-on-grade floors became instantly recognizable and integral design elements of the Eichler house. Oakland’s contributions to the development and refinement of these systems were a part of a larger regional design movement, but they are notable for having been developed in the field of mass-produced housing. The association between Oakland and Eichler continued until Eichler’s death in 1974.

The Oakland & Imada Virtual Collection contains images of all the site plans with house model numbers from the Oakland & Image Collection. For Eichler home owners wishing to find materials for their house, they can find their lot on the site plan to determine their house model number and then contact the Archives to see if/what other materials exist. 

For more information on the complete Oakland & Imada Collection please refer to the Finding Aid. A list of projects in an Excel spreadsheet can be downloaded from the Collection's infomation page.

Blake Garden

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Blake Garden lies in Kensington, CA an unincorporated residential community of approximately 5,000 persons within the jurisdiction of Contra Costa County. The garden’s main entrance is off Rincon Road, just northwest of Arlington Avenue, the primary north-south road leading from Berkeley’s Marin Circle through Kensington, El Cerrito and into Richmond. Like most Kensington sites, the Blake property offers a spectacular panoramic view of the San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge. The 10.5-acre university property includes the Blake House, currently designated as the residence for the president of the University of California, and the Blake Garden, owned by the university and managed as a teaching facility by the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning (LAEP). The garden is a regional resource that is open to the public on weekdays and known for its outstanding collection of plants assembled by the Blake family between 1922 and 1962 and augmented by the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning (LAEP) since its acquisition in 1957.

Greenwood Common

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The development of Greenwood Common began in 1903 with the construction of a summerhouse by John Galen Howard for the prominent San Francisco attorney Warren Gregory and his wife Sadie. After World War II, the area became home to a growing number of professionals, particularly those associated with the University. Among these new residents were the architect William Wurster, newly appointed dean of the UC, Berkeley, School of Architecture, and his wife Catherine Bauer Wurster, city planner, educator, and author.

In 1951, Wurster began negotiations with Sadie Gregory for the purchase of her lot on Greenwood Terrace.  His intent was to subdivide and develop this parcel of land and to design a house on one of the lots for his family. Wurster envisioned a development that would combine an idealistic sense of community with a modernist design aesthetic and an awareness of regional traditions. He wanted a property that could be subdivided and developed as a community that reflected his and Catherine’s philosophy of socially engaged architecture -- that “a community defined by a group of homes could influence the way their owners lived.”

Greenwood Common is a large open green space that borders on Greenwood Terrace and provides a glorious view of the bay and the golden gate in the distance. Initially the shared space was to be only the biomorphic oval on the west end between numbers 10 and 7, but the center lot that was expected to have two homes was never developed. Given the slop of the site, the houses on the north side are two stories, and those on the south are single stories.

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Beatrix Farrand Unidentified


Beatrix Jones Farrand opened her landscape design office in New York in 1895. In 1899 Farrand joined Frederick Law Olmsted, Charles Eliot, and others in founding the American Society of Landscape Architects. During her fifty-year career, Farrand designed approximately 200 gardens as well as collecting books, prints, and photographs documenting landscape architecture and related topics for a research library at her Reef Point estate in Maine that also included a test garden of native flora and an herbarium. Among her major projects were Dartington Hall in Devonshire, England, Dumbarton Oaks in Washington D.C., the Rockefeller Estate in Maine, and projects for Princeton and Yale Universities.

The Beatrix Farrand Unidentified Virtual Collection contains images of unidentified drawings within the Beatrix Jones Farrand Collection. The Environmental Design Archives has digitized and made these documents available with the help of an anonymous donation. These images are now available with the hope that members of the public will identify them. If you are able to identify any drawing, please click the link at the bottom of each exhibition page that reads, “Recognize this item? Help us identify it by submitting information” and enter any information that you can.

Whichever drawings are identified can then be added to an existing project folder, or be placed in a named folder and added to the Farrand project index as part of the EDA finding aid