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National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form - page 3 / 22

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7.

Description

Describe the present and original (if known) physical appearance

Homer

G.

$3,160,000

as

Phillips Hospital was constructed between 1932 and 1936

a

municipal

hospital

for

St.

Louis

blacks.

Designed

by

at a City

cost of Architect

Albert A. Osburg, the hospital complex (See Site Plan.) comprises a tion building with four radiating patient wards, a service building home all faced with brick and trimmed with Art Deco terra cotta.

central administra and a nurses'

Among the design achievements of the hospital are the extent to which the plan, elevations and materials are successfully adapted to and integrated with the residen tial character of the area. Although skyscraper hospitals of twenty to thirty stories were gaining favor in urban centers in the late twenties, the choice of a six and seven story plan for Homer G. Phillips indicates sensitivity to pedestrian scale and

a thoughtful address to the neighborhood streetscape feeling of a strictly utilitarian, monolithic block,

.

(Photo #1) the architect

To avoid

any

employed

con

trasts of form,

color and texture with

buildings.

While

simple

and

direct

in

restraint but plan, devices

to

great

such

as

effect

angled

throughout

the

wings

interrupted

by polygonal add interest

towers and bows, and varied and saliency to the design.

roof shapes (Photos #2

(hipped, & #3)

flat

and

polygonal)

The hospital

also profits from the excellent disposition and quality of materials

and ornamental

detail.

Rising from a polished,

rose granite water table,

the white

terra cotta of the first story is continued above in second story

dow surrounds differentiate

(accented the first

with rosettes) and used stage of the building.

again as a string The brick curtain

pointed-arch win course to wall is enlivened

by a variety of colors in warm earth tones

(green,

ochre,

red-brown,

etc.);

brick

pilasters articulate shafts of the wings into two-bay cotta Art Deco ornament of surprising intricacy bands and central unit as well as the middle stories of the

units.

Muted yellow terra

the top stories of the polygonal towers; each

wings band

is executed in a different geometric pattern.

(Photo #2)

The horizontal

courses

help ground the building,

relating it to the scale of the surrounding neighborhood

unit

joining the

and

terra cotta

houses.

The polygonal

of

round-arched

windows

wings is enhanced by a two

balustrade.

(Photo

#3)

story

ensemble

The most richly treated elevation is the facade of the sixteen-bay central

block with projecting end tunately compromised by a

bays

new

(the Administration Building)

which today is unfor

entrance

which

conceals

the

first

three

stories.

Still

highly visible, however, is the fine display of decorative brickwork and terra cotta in the window spandrels of the shaft, climaxing in the top story where ropes of terra cotta outline concentric brick arched window surrounds and blue roundels

highlight the frame the top single story,

spandrels. story which out-patient

A terra cotta cornice is also nicely capped clinic constructed in

and dentilled string course dramatically

by a red tile, hipped roof. 1959-60 connects to the south side A

of the hospital by an exterior corridor.

(Photo #3 and Site Plan.)

An effort was

made to because

integrate the of the recent

clinic with the hospital by the use date of construction, the clinic is

of similar considered

brick. However, a non-contributing

addition.

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