Mid-Century

Historic Littleton is capturing the present to preserve the past.

Take a look through these portfolios of Littleton's mid-century historic landmarks!
 
Photography and copy by Mike Yost
Source: "Context of Littleton Colorado 1949-1967" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


Intermountain Rural Electric Association | 1949


 
 

This building, located at 2100 West Littleton Boulevard across from the Arapaho County Courthouse, was headquarters for the Intermountain Rural Electric Association (IREA).

Built in 1949, the structure was constructed following what was at the time a new art modern style architecture, designed by Eugene G. Groves. 

The building features running bond tapestry brick with rounded cushion corners and cantilevered concrete canopies. 

In 1952, a warehouse was added to the south side of the building. And in 1955, a second story was added to the structure’s one story and basement level, which is recessed in the slope along the west and south side of the hill. 

The basement was utilized as a designated nuclear fallout shelter which would have provided protection from radiation fallout in the event of a nuclear attack.

The architect, Groves, moved to Denver in 1914 where he designed and built numerous structures throughout Colorado, seven of which are on the National Register of Historic Places.

Photography and Copy: Mike Yost
Source: "Context of Littleton Colorado 1949-1967" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


Intermountain Rural Electric Association expansion | 1975

In 1975, a large expansion was added to the original Intermountain Rural Electric Association headquarters located at 2100 West Littleton Boulevard, adding an extra 10,000 square feet of office and work space.

The three story structure was designed by Eugene Sternberg who utilized an alternative architectural design than the original IREA building designed by Eugene Groves.

Unlike the rounded corners of the original 1949 building, Sternberg used sharp right angles with windows recessed into the building and framed by sloped sills of brick. 

The bottom floor was designed to house utility vehicles and consisted of four garage bays flanked by large brick walls on either side.

A pedestrian walkway was constructed to connect the older Groves’ building to the newer Sternberg structure, the bridge built with concrete and enclosed with dark solar glass.

Sternberg was born in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia and emigrated to the United States in 1945. He began designing Littleton buildings in 1950 with the MacKenzie medical offices at 2009 West Littleton Boulevard.

Sternberg’s architectural firm was the first in Littleton, designing such historic landmarks as the Bemis Library, the Littleton Law Center, and the Arapahoe Community College.

Photography and Copy: Mike Yost
Source: "Historic Context of Littleton" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


Littleton Savings and Loan |circa 1960


 
 

This mid-century building located at 1449 W. Littleton Boulevard was originally a bank: Littleton Savings and Loan.

It was built to catch the eye of city denizens and embody the ideas of modern banking. Local architect Joseph Marlow designed the two-story structure which featured a drive-through window, a novel form of banking at the time. 

Marlow served as the secretary of the Planning Commission and is known for his artistic license in designing facilities. He worked with artist and sculptor Robert Propst, a Colorado native who created the decorative screen the covers the front of the building. 

The Littleton Savings and Loan structure is one of the few surviving buildings in the region featuring this exclusive collaboration between architect Marlow and artist Propst.

Photography and Copy: Mike Yost
Source: "Context of Littleton Colorado 1949-1967" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


The Court House Professional Building | 1959

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Located at 2009 W. Littleton Boulevard next to the historic Arapahoe County Courthouse, this salient city landmark features an innovative angled roof structure and a single balcony overlooking the street.

The building was designed and built by Eugene D. Sternberg (1915 – 2005), an influential architect who utilized the complex as headquarters for his business. 

Eugene Sternberg & Associates was the first architectural firm to be based in Littleton. Arapahoe County and Thebus Pharmacy were also tenants.

Sternberg was Littleton’s singular architect during the post-World War II era, designing many mid-century structures including the Carl Sandberg Elementary School in ’67, the Bemis Library in ’65, the Geneva Village in ’64, and the Faith Congressional Church in ’62.

Sternberg was presented the lifetime achievement award in 2004 by Historic Littleton, Inc., not only for his architectural designs around the city, but also his dedication as an advocate in the Littleton and Arapahoe County communities. 

Photography and Copy: Mike Yost
Source: "Context of Littleton Colorado 1949-1967" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


Guaranty Company Building | 1961


 

This striking structure, located at 2000 West Littleton Blvd, was first home to the Title Guaranty Company and cost $200,000 to build.

Designed and built in 1961 by Littleton architect Joseph Marlow, the one story, 12,000 sq. ft. structure features a brilliant external ceramic tile mural created by Belgian artist Rene Heyvaert.

The eye-catching tile-work on the front of the building became a "conversational piece" among architects and local entrepreneurs in Littleton.

Unfortunately the tiles were eventually painted over, but the building's current residents, Intergroup Architects, renovated the structure and returned the colorful tiles to their original luster.

Photography and Copy: Mike Yost
Source: "Context of Littleton Colorado 1949-1967" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


The Miller Building | 1972


 

The Littleton Law Center at 1901 West Littleton Boulevard was built in 1972 by architect Eugene D. Sternberg (1915-2005) and named after Littleton denizen Martin Miller.

The building features surfaces of gray coarse concrete highlighted with tinted office windows. 

Born in Prague, Sternberg was displaced by World War II and immigrated to the United States in 1945.

He started the first architectural firm in Littleton, housed in another Littleton historical landmark, the Court House Professional Building (1959) located at 2009 W. Littleton Boulevard. 

Sternberg designed other mid-century structures as well including the Bemis Library in ’65, the Carl Sandberg Elementary School in ’67, and the Arapahoe Community College in ’74 which parallels many of the architectural design elements of the Miller Building. 

Sternberg was presented the lifetime achievement award in 2004 by Historic Littleton, Inc., not only for his architectural designs around the city, but also his dedication as an advocate in the Littleton and Arapahoe County communities. 

Photography and Copy: Mike Yost
Source: "Context of Littleton Colorado 1949-1967" by Diane Wray Tomasso

 


 

Board of Directors

  • Gail Keeley - President
    Liz Eaton - Vice President
    Barbara Eaton - Membership
    Sonya Ellingboe - Secretary
    Ron Richards - Treasurer


    Directors:
    Charles Carroll
    Karen Arras
    Liz Eaton
    Rebecca Kast
    Mike Massey
    Jean Selders
    Darlee Whiting
    Gail Keeley
    John Gerkin
    Jim Taylor

     


     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

 

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Designed by: Mike Yost and No Pickles