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Maryland's National Register Properties



Photo credit: Betty Bird, 03/1998
Samester Parkway Apartments
Inventory No.: B-3992
Date Listed: 9/9/1998
Location: 7000-7022 Park Heights Avenue, Baltimore, Baltimore City
Category: Building
Period/Date of Construction: 1939
Architect/Builder: Architect: Hal A. Miller; Developer: S.L. Hammerman
Description: The Samester Parkway Apartments, constructed on Park Heights Avenue in 1939, are three-story, red brick, Art Deco style garden apartments. The 72-unit complex consists of two symmetrical detached wings, massed as stacked chevrons of six apartment buildings each, that face each other across a central courtyard. The wings form a broken X that extends across the property. Architectural detail is confined to bands of black brick, elaborate frontispieces housing the entrances to individual apartment buildings, and projecting pavilions on the east end of the buildings facing Park Heights Avenue. The structural system is reinforced concrete. The typical apartment block houses six one- and two-bedroom apartments disposed about a central stair. Garages extend across the rear of the property on the west. The Samester Parkway Apartments are in good condition with minor alterations typical of residential rental property. Significance: The Samester Parkway Apartment complex, constructed in 1939, is an excellent example of an Art Deco style garden apartment complex. Designed by architect Hal A. Miller for prominent Baltimore developer Samuel L. Hammerman, the Samester Parkway Apartments illustrate the impact of European modernism on American architectural design. The Samester Parkway Apartment complex incorporates the façade geometry, stylized ornament, surface contrast, and emphasis on new materials found in Art Deco styling. It illustrates the important role Federal Housing Administration (FHA)’s federally insured mortgages played in the development of garden apartments in the mid-20th century and offers a distinct, local variation of the garden apartment typology. The locally significant complex is an early example of FHA-financed garden apartments in Baltimore and is an excellent example of the American translation of European modern architectural style.

 

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