"Ike-ler? Itch-ler?" Growing up in the Concord/Walnut Creek area, I always was subconsciously aware of an "Eichler home," especially a small neighborhood off of Cowell Road in Concord. I remember driving to my sister's swim practices at Cowell pool, looking at houses with car ports and flat roofs; houses that were distinctly different than the 1970s rancher I grew up in.
It was not until a few years ago that we actually saw the inside of an Eichler home. We fell in love with the walls (and walls) of glass windows, making the house feel expansive. We visited an atrium model, with the house built around a center courtyard. It was like nothing we had seen in other homes in our area. The home maintained classic modern lines and its original layout matched the (now popular) concept of open floor plan living.
I started researching more about the homes and discovered the history of Joseph Eichler, the builder of these homes and neighborhoods. He was not an architect, but a merchant builder who partnered with prestigious architects of the time to design and build modern homes for the "average" American family. From the 1950s to 1970s, Eichler developed tracts of housing developments in Northern California (Concord, Walnut Creek, San Rafael, San Mateo, San Francisco, San Jose, Castro Valley and Palo Alto) and Southern California.
Our model is a 1224 atrium model, designed by architect A. Quincy Jones and Frederick Emmons as part of Eichler's Rancho San Miguel neighborhood, located in Walnut Creek, CA. Our home had already been updated over the years, but we hope to restore some of the mid-century modern aesthetics, while also making it a modern, comfortable home for our young family.
Here's just the beginning of what's bound to be a tireless (tiring?) and exciting journey!
Love this original 1224 floorplan, found on an Eichler Blog that documents a remodel of our same model.
Want to learn more? Visit the epic Eichler Network