Feature Articles

San Diego Banks and Art

Balboa Park: Modeltown

(Streamline) Modern San Diego

Modern La Jolla

The FutureCraft Home

Meet Mac McClain

San Diego Quick Tour

The Pan-Pacific House

Profile: The Timken Museum of Art

Architecture Critic James Britton's Biography

Towards a Definition of San Diego Modernism

Modernism: How The Principles Developed

Sim Bruce Richards: A Legacy in Wood

San Diego's Contemporary Modernists

AIA Design Awards Remarks

Photo Essay: Lloyd Ruocco Design Demolished

Preserving Modernism

Horizon Home

Much like their buildings, there are fewer of San Diego’s post-War Architects with us Today

UCSD Muir College Modernism

Definition of San Diego Modernism

Frank Lloyd Wright's Legacy in San Diego

Gregory Ain House Discovered in Vista

Modern San Diego Prologue

2004 Julius Shulman Wall Calendar

Keith York Interview 1

Keith York Interview 2

 

The Horizon Home Contest Houses

For several years in the early 1960s, a national competition created a number of progressive designs utilitizing concrete and masonry exclusively in the design. The Concrete Industries sponsored the contest - to display to the public, architects and to the building trades the merits of using concrete products in home building.

From the brochure for the 1964 Horizon Home, "The Concrete Industries Horizon Homes Program in its fourth year is sponsored jointly by the Portland Cement Association, National Ready-Mixed Concrete Association, National Concrete Masonry Association, Prestressed Concrete Institute, and Asbestos Cement Products Assocation."


Horizon Home, Hester & Jones (1963)
Photography by Julius Shulman

According to Robert Des Lauriers, “Around 1961-62 our firm was selected to do a residence using concrete & concrete masonry as the primary construction material. This was a joint effort by the three major National Concrete Associations, San Diego Transit Concrete Co., American Housing Guild, the builders and our firm.” Des Lauriers continued, “This was a national competition, and I guess we won the honor of being the first recipient of this endeavor. Our model traveled all over the US and was returned in mess, as I remember."

The project garnered a large amount of press, "...newspaper articles and write-ups...three pages in the L.A. Times...” The home was, '1900 sq.ft., roofed with a concrete thin shell hyperbolic paraboloid, walls were the first use of mortar-less grout lock masonry. A 4 bedroom 2-1/2 bath, extremely flexible floor plan. And the kicker was it only cost $20,000 to build (1961 prices were more like $18-$20 per square ft.). Also, there was a hyperbolic parabaloid tree house for the kids."


Horizon Home, Hendrick & Mock Architects (1964)

John Mock's design in La Jolla was given the 1964 Merit award by the concrete industry - including Portland Cement Association, National Ready-Mix Concrete Association, National Concrete Masonry Association, Pre-Stressed Concrete Institute, and the Mineral Fiber Products Bureau.


Robert Des Lauriers' Horizon Home

While each project was unique, Schrock Construction Company worked with Hendrick and Mock to build the fourth design. Their advertising materials boasted that over 1000 visited the home on opening day - the house remained on display during "National Home Week."

In an article in the local press, "Another 1964 Horizon Home is nearing completion in Cliaremont and will be ready for public showing in early October." Hendrick & Mock's design was on display between September 20-27, 1964, on the eve of Criley and McDowell's design opening weeks later.

Criley and McDowell's project was built by Claraboya Development Co. Landscaping for "the all electric Claraboya project" was done by Warren E. Toy of Claremont.

San Diego Horizon Home Projects

Horizon Home Contest Residence for American Housing Guild (1961)
5708 Abernathy Way, Clairemont Mesa
Designed by Robert Des Lauriers

Horizon Home Contest Winner (1963)
2726 Angell Avenue, University City
Designed by Henry Hester and Robert Jones

*Charlie Hughes commissioned a replica of this home at 2608 Angell Avenue

Concrete Industries Horizon Home (1964)
6130 Calle Vera Cruz, La Jolla
Designed by John Mock

Concrete Industries Horizon Home (1964)
2535 North Mountain Avenue, Claremont CA 91711
Designed by Criley and McDowell (Fred)
*'The Concrete House' by Fred McDowell Architects was awarded the 1964 Horizon Home Award by the Portland Cement Association
. The home 'utilizes pre-cast concrete elements brought to the narrow hillside by helicopter.'


Hester & Jones Horizon Home


Hester & Jones Horizon Home


Hester & Jones Horizon Home


Hester & Jones Horizon Home


Robert Des Lauriers' Horizon Home