ALBERT CARL KOCH and NC TECHBUILT HOUSES
Albert Carl Koch was born in Milwaukee WI. He was educated at Harvard and got a Master of Architecture degree from Harvard in 1937. He then moved to Sweden and worked for Sven Markelius for six months, blending his formal education with clean Scandinavian design. He returned to the US to design mostly houses for Edward Durell Stone, including a house for his own parents.
Later in the 1940s, Koch designed several affordable prefabricated housing prototypes. He did the original Acorn House (1946), re-design of the all-steel Lustron House (1949), and Conantum, one of the nation's first cluster housing developments in Concord MA (1951). Launched in 1953, his Techbuilt House was wildly successful and would be available in twenty-two models. The Techbuilt House could be constructed (on average) for $7.50/sf, as compared to $10/sf for a conventional house and $15/sf for a custom-built house. Over 3,000 houses were sold in the US before 1963. Website.
In 1958, Koch co-authored a book with Andy Lewis titled At Home With Tomorrow about the Techbuilt House and Koch's other prefab designs. Video. Techbuilt brochure used in NC by builder Bob Bacon. Techbuilt research site. The Techbuilt Idea.
About 1962 - The National Solar Observatory Houses, Coronal Loop, Sunspot NM. 21 of Koch's TechBuilt that still exist as of 2018. Photos courtesy of Mark Gutzman.
1954 - The Herbert M. and Veva Jaeger House, 102 Glenwood Road, Morganton NC. Sold around 1957 to the Brysons. Sold to the Clarks. Fell into disrepair. Sold to Harry and Denice Seng. Sold in 2016 to Danielle H. and Richard Scott Garnes.
Around 1956 - The C. D. S. Clarkson House, 1.33 miles from town on Franklin Road, Hwy 64, Highlands NC.
Around 1956 - The Mrs. Gilbert S. Brownell House, Billy Cabin Ridge, 54 Brownell Road, Highlands NC. Sold in 2017 to Jeffrey D. Zahner.
1956 - 721 Fairbanks Road, Charlotte NC. Was on the 1956 Charlotte Christmas Parade of Homes. Sold in 1985 to Sisan S. and George T. King, still owners as of 2022.
1957 - The Clifton H. and Juanita Kreps Residence, 634 Morgan Creek Road, Chapel Hill NC. Sold in 1974 to Jay and Carolyn Judson. Sold in 1991 to David and Ruth Morgan who still owned it as of 2022. Garage added in 1994.
1959 - The John and Anne Spitznagel House, 515 Morgan Creek Road, Chapel Hill NC. Photo by Dail Dixon. Sold in 1965 to George W. and Barbara Selden Douglas. Sold in 1967 to Robert M. and Mary Alice Griffin. Sold in 1970 to Robert and Jewel Frary. Sold in 1971 to Charles and Jean Vickery. Sold in 1977 to Rodney and Nancy Barfield. Sold in 1979 to Charles H. and Claudia Stephens Jr. Sold in 1994 to Tom and Marsha Jepsen who still owned it as of 2022.
1960 - The Robert F. and Zella D. Leonard House, 708 Coker Lane, Chapel Hill NC. Sold in 1979 to George P. (Philip) and Ruth J. Manire. Was a rental for many years. Sold in 2001 to Adrienne Hanmer. Sold in 2002 to Claire Williams and Floyd Emmitt Bridgwater Jr. Sold in 2017 to Leah Boucher and John Strickler.
1961 -The Edward C. and Hazel Schroeder Bolmeier House, 1535 Pinecrest Road, Durham NC. According to their daughter Jane, this is a Techbuilt house. Sold in 1989 to Nancy and Samuel Hope. Sold in 1996 to John Staddon and Lucinda M. Paris. Sold in 2011 to Jacqueline and Gordon Bagwell. Photo by Heather Wagner.
1962 - The Thomas and Nancy Wilson Residence, 2721 Sevier Street, Durham NC. Two beams run the full length of the house and there are no interior loadbearing walls. The unique hot water heating system not only heats water but the entire house through a series of pipes and radiator fans. 3328 square feet. Sold in 1998 to Deborah Rust. Sold in 2007 to Johannes Bouten and Leta Nutt. Sold in 2009 to Thomas and Wendy Edds.
1962 - The Elizabeth H. and George Pasti Jr. House, 901 Forest Hill Circle, Greenville NC. Sold in 1968 to Juanita F. and David T. Greer. Sold in to 1986 to Janean K. and Richard E. Spradling. Sold in 1993 to Katrina J. and Joseph K. Kiely. Sold in 2006 to Kristen and Scott D. Below. Photo by Kristen Below.
1962 - 710 Coker Lane, Chapel Hill NC. Sold in 1973 to George P. (Philip) and Ruth Manire. Sold in 1975 to Kim Simmons. Sold in 1987 to John Scheetz. Sold in 1992 to Evelynn Kawata and James Naudeau. Sold in 1999 to Arlene Davis and John Peterson. Sold in 2021 to Arlene M. Davis and John L. Peterson, Trustees.
1963 - The Thomas O. Perry House, 5048 Avent Ferry Road, Raleigh NC. Deeded in 1998 to Craig and Harriet Perry. Deeded in 2002 to Craig Perry. Deeded in 2012 to Craig and Tamara Sue Perry. Sold in 2017 to Robert C. Mataxis. Sold in 2021 to Kristine Kryger and Derrick Lowder.
1967 - The Walter Allen Jr. Residence, 1 Davie Lane, Chapel Hill NC. Sold in 1971 to Samuel and Gerda Fillenbaum. Sold in 2016 to Terry Y. Lorant.
1967 - The Jerry and Janice Warren House, 3113 Birnamwood Road Raleigh NC. Sold in 1971 to Richard and Edith Sylla. Sold to Edythe Poyner. Sold in 2016 to West Highland Run LLC, controlled by Poyner. Sold in 2019 to Marianne and Constantine Jordanou. Will be destroyed and replaced by a new Modernist house designed by Vinny Petrarca.
Sources include: Sally Greene; Virginia Faust; Harry Seng; Philip B. Manire; Claire Williams.