(Quoted from a Dec. 13, 2007 news release of the Kansas Historic Society: http://www.kshs.org/news/releases/pdfs/2007_kshs_national_register_Dec07.pdf)
North Topeka Avenue Apartments Historic District – Wichita, Sedgwick Co. Built within a span of four years from 1926 to 1929, this cluster of four apartment buildings at 625, 630, 631, & 632 N Topeka Avenue share common features of design and construction. The buildings are being nominated to the National Register for their architectural significance and for their reflection of popular trends in multi-family housing seen in Wichita and nationwide during this period. All are rectangular in plan and two or three stories in height with brick-clad exteriors and flat roofs with modest parapets. While the buildings illustrate vernacular interpretations of Colonial Revival, Craftsman, Tudor Revival, and Art Deco architecture applied to multi-family buildings, their form and materials also share many traits with Tapestry Brick commercial blocks constructed during the 1920s. One of the buildings is a stacked flats apartment building with a single residence on each floor. The other three buildings are conventional low-rise apartment buildings that house between 15 and 24 residential units organized around a double-loaded corridor. The vaguely commercial-style brick facades and their uniform setback from the street distinguish them from the singlefamily homes that dominate the blocks in the immediate vicinity. From the late 1920s, when these buildings were constructed, through the start of World War II, the apartments housed a mix of single men, single women, and married couples who worked a variety of jobs. Tenants tended not to live in the buildings for any length of time, and the apartments experienced especially high turnover in the early 1930s.
Photo: DC & VC 1-08