Did Frank Lloyd Wright Invent Split-Level Homes?

SOLD 6108 Foxhill Street

Some architectural historians would like to say that he did. Many of his prairie style homes incorporated a “split” design however they were far larger than what the average family could afford at the height of his building days. The split level homes that eventually followed did follow two key concepts that the Frank Lloyd Wright introduced in his prairie home: half-floors dividing family living space from private sleeping areas and a home that flowed with the contour of the lot versus being set on top of it.

Another set of historians credit Bill Levitt the creator of Levitt Town. I’m personally going with Frank Lloyd Wright as his designs are much more estecially pleasing and in-tune with today’s desire to think more about our environment. Whoever is ultimately given credit for the creation of the split-level home, the homes gained popularity in the 1950’s and 60’s and replaced the tired ranch homes that had been easy to build in the 30’s and 40’s. I happen to be a big fan of the classic split level home. Maybe it is because I grew up in one and owned our family home for a few years. Or perhaps it is because I have sold many of them in the Fairfax County area

I began researching the history of the split level in order to look for additional ways to promote my listing at 6108 Fox Hill Street in Fairfax County. In the 1950’s when the split was first introduced it was because families needed more space than the ranch provided. If you grew up in a split-level neighborhood chances are you could look left, right and across the street and see a split level. I know in our neighborhood you could. The only difference was if you lived on a lot with a bit of a hill you had a four-level instead of three-level split or maybe an integrated garage. Most of the splits built in the 1950’s were modest with square footage between 1200-1800 finished square feet.

The design of all the split levels was the same. When you came in the front door you were greeted by a large living room, a separate dining room and kitchen. A few steps up led to the bedrooms and bath; a few steps down led to the family room and another bath. This design provided a family with three distinct living areas. In our neighborhood the splits also came with something that you don’t find in any home built today, a double walk-up attic.

I was recently cleaning out some family papers and found the builders brochure from when my parents bought their home. The owners of 6108 Fox Hill had a laugh over the thought that these homes were originally built without AC nor were there any outlets for clothes dryers. Hey, that is me they are laughing at.

So if you are looking for an all brick home with just the right amount of space then check out this listing in Fairfax County. With plaster walls, hardwood floors, and tile bathrooms you will be glad you did. Oh and don’t forget the double floored walk-up attic!

Yates village

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