A.D. Stenger (1920-2002)
Arthur Dallas Stenger better known as A.D. Stenger is perhaps one of Austin's better known residential architects, an impressive feat for someone that dropped out of UT prior to graduating. A.D. Stenger was not one to follow the traditional path however. He was innovative, had strong opinions and wasn't afraid to do things his own way. In 1950 he passed his architectural exams just prior to graduating the University of Texas School of Architecture. The demand for post war housing was high, and he was ready to work.
Stenger was more than just an Architect however, he also a builder, and a successful entrepreneur. He has been often compared to Eichler who during the same period of time was busy developing large modern subdivisions in California. While the comparison is a fair one, Eichler and Stenger do have several large differences. First off Eichler was not actually an architect at all, just a savvy real estate developer who employed multiple architects who designed very similar houses for him. Eichler often times used exact floor plans of houses next to each other simply switching up orientation and rooflines to make them look unique. Stenger on the other hand built his houses one at a time often working on them himself. While there were occasional duplicates, the vast majority of the over 100 homes he built in the Austin area were completely unique. We find the highest concentration of Stenger homes in three neighborhoods he developed, South Lund Park, Ridgewood Village and Stenger Addition. These areas were picked by Stenger as they were originally outside of city limits, giving him less restriction as to what he was able to build.
Love A.D. Stenger?
I have compiled a list of 50+ A.D. Stenger homes in the area and keep a close eye on them. If you are interested in purchasing a Stenger home please contact me. Alternately if you already own an A.D. Stenger home please consider joining the A.D. Stenger FB group to connect with other owners in the Austin area.
What does aN A.D. Stenger designed home look like?
Here are a few from my list:
And a few that have recently been listed on the MLS.
This one is a blank pallet with good pedigree. Designed and built by AD Stenger in 1960 it's everything you could want in an architect designed mid century modern house. It's got terrazzo, and an awesome funky fireplace and best of all no one has done a lousy remodel to it yet. Make sure you check out my little feature on it here to see interior photos I snapped a few days ago.
Details: 2,237 sqft, 4 bed, 2 Bath
According to the current owner of this house it was originally built by A.D. Stenger but designed by Earl Nesbitt (who worked for Page Sutherland Page before opening his own firm in Austin). I've never heard of Stenger building other architects designs, but I have heard that he was building into the 70's and 80's so I suppose it's plausible.
Details: 2,348 sqft, 3 Bed, 3 Bath
Not on MLS. Contact me for info.
If you read my newsletter, you know I've been teasing about some off market Stenger homes for a bit. I had the pleasure of walking through this A.D. Stenger designed and built home a few weeks ago and meeting the owner. It's in incredibly original shape and has been lovingly preserved. All it needs now is another owner to love it the way it has been for the last 58 years.
Details: 1,501 sq. ft. 2 Bed, 2 Bath
The one is a true stunner. Originally designed and built by A. D. Stenger in 1950 it received a comprehensive and sensitive update in 2012 by Chioco Design. I love all the clerestory windows, they do so much to make a space bright and open feeling. The addition of all the roof top decking is amazing too, especially with those views. All that goodness though may take a back seat to those amazing bathrooms. Hats off to Andrea Calo for the beautiful photos.
Details: 2,042 sq. ft. 3 Bed, 3 Bath
As anticipated the butterfly house officially went on the MLS today. If your looking for my thoughts on this amazing house, make sure you read my latest blog post. I just wanted to take a quick moment thought give a round of applause to everyone who made this house amazing, from the OG himself Mr. Stenger through to the owners that remodeled it under the care of Rick and Cindy Black and everyone that worked on the house. Of course hats off to Andrea Calo as well for taking this amazing shots. More pictures here.
Details: 2,694 sq. ft. 5 Bed, 3 Bath
This 1954 home designed and built by A. D. Stenger looks to be about as original as they come thanks in part to the current owner that has owned the property since 1966. Luckily it's been well maintained, so fingers crossed it won't meet the same fate as the Stenger home on Ridgewood which is about to be demolished. I'll make you a deal, if you buy this house and promise to fix it up, I'll provide my design services free of charge. All I ask in return is that you invite me over for cocktails when it's all done.
Details: 1,642 sq. ft. 3 Bed, 1 Bath
We've seen this A. D. Stenger designed and built home before. It was listed last summer for $1.6 million but never sold. Well, it's back now with a new price. As mentioned before, this house has seen an update (maybe addition?) which increases the square footage significantly.
Details: 3,693 sq. ft. 4 Bed, 3 Bath
I almost didn't share this one just because the photos are so lousy. Images aside, put on your imagination caps and picture this. The house was designed by A. D. Stenger so expect vaulted ceilings, exposed beams and lots of natural stone from the site. From the pictures you can tell that you'll have treetop views from inside. With a little love I'm sure it could be amazing, I just don't know if it's going to make financial sense to anyone at that price point.
Details: 1,374 sq/ft, 2 Bed, 2 Bath
This one has been on the market for a while, but I just got the heads up from a former owner that it was designed by A. D. Stenger. Unfortunately it looks like it is only being marketed for it's land value. That's why there aren't many good pictures (though good street view is helpful). According to the previous owner some of the interior features include "lake views, striking central fireplace and black marble floors remain intact and beautiful. ". Sounds like a saver to me.
Details: 2,458 sq/ft, 4 Bed, 2 Bath
I've been hinting about this one in the newsletter for a few weeks now (and it's been on my coming soon list). This home, along with yesterdays seem to have escaped demolition and is once again available for sale. A huge thanks to all of you for keeping the social pressure on to save these historic homes. Hopefully this time they will go to owners that understand the significance of the homes and appreciate the architecture.
Details: 1,288 sq/ft, 3 Bed, 2 Bath