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$9.5M Mod Open House Sunday April 29 2-4 PM


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48.jpgHouston Mod invites you to join us this Sunday, April 29, for a very special Mod of the Month 2 PM - 4 PM. April is MODern Month in Texas. Fitting for such a special occasion, Houston MOD has arranged access to one of the state's most fantastic yet endangered modern houses. The house is located in Houston on the banks of Buffalo Bayou in Hunters Creek Village. It was designed by Richard S. Colley in 1964 for James and Dorothy Greer. Greer is a developer and business leader from Houston. The plans were a wedding gift from Colley to the Greers. The house is presently listed for sale and in need of a new preservation minded owner. Richard S. Colley (1910-1983) was a nationally acclaimed architect who worked from Corpus Christi, Texas. Educated at Texas A & M College of Architecture, he designed mostly in an organic style of architecture. In Corpus Christi, he designed a fine complex of 1950's modern civic buildings, most of which have sadly been demolished. Colley's greatest work is said to be the Texas Instruments building in Dallas he designed with Otha Neil "O'Neil" Ford. The building was listed in the Handbook of American Architecture in 1961 as one of 14 examples of great American structures. The Greer house, said to be one of Colley's finest, covers over 12,500 SF, all at ground level. Architectural historian Stephen Fox says Colley's aptitude for detailing materials and his precision at linear composition are displayed in the dun-colored brick wall surfaces and the thin projecting roof slab. The pyramid that rises above the center of the house shields an internal courtyard. Refreshments will be available. img089.jpg

108 Timberwilde Lane, Houston, Texas 77024

Hunters Creek Village]

HAR LINK Images courtesy Ben Hill. img090.jpgimg095.jpgimg096.jpg

MODern Month Events

April is MODern Month in Texas

designfair2012_web2.pngDesign Fair starts Wednesday evening and extends to Sunday! All the details are here. Support future Mod events by becoming a member of Houston Mod. Check your membership status with any Houston Mod representative. Houston Mod publications will be available during the Mod of the Month event. We hope to see you there!

Edited by SpaceAge
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The address is 108 Timberwilde Lane

Houston, Texas 77024

Located off Memorial Drive, East of Voss Road

The subdivision is Timberwilde located in Hunters Creek Village.

The following is information given to Houston Mod on 4-25-2012 by Mr. Greer, original owner and builder of the house:

Mr. James H. Greer met Richard Colley (architect of 108 Timberwilde Lane) thru dealings with Texas Instruments in 1950's. Mr. Greer helped TI develop buildings in US and several countries.

Richard Colley traveled with Greer and wife Dorothy to England and taught them about art and architecture. Mr. Greer had little appreciation for either before that time. Greer now has an art collection.

R. Colley was a talented artist himself. He was also very technically oriented. When the semi-conductor manager at TI left, R. Colley told TI how to run the dept and became TI VP for that dept. He was gruff and said what was on his mind and didn't care what anyone thought about him.

Notice trim work in house. Amazing fine quality. A special type of trim material was used which works perfectly with all materials brick, tile, plaster etc all uniformly.

House is 12,500 sf. After the death of Mrs. Greer, Mr. Greer lost interest in living there, moved out 2008. He now has a townhouse.

Hans Ash sp? of Corpus Christi did trim. Front door built in Corpus by R. Colley's trim shop. Colley later had some relation to Hon Door Company.

Interior designer was Inez McHail. Her husband was an architect.

Had a landscape architect named xx. (Not Fred Buxton or Pat Fleming but Greer knew them.)

John Watson designed and installed the exterior lighting systems.

James Greer was a Civil Engineering graduate from TAMU in 1947.

Tile in house is D'Hanis which is hard fired then glaze is chipped away so its much better than saltillo- stronger and more uniform.

110,000 brick in house.

Mr. Bartlett was the brick mason for the house. He used all tooled joints of extremely fine quality.

Originally the site was 7.33 acres purchased from Greer's friend Lee Whiley. Flood Control took the back 300' of site early on when bayou was widened.

Original purchase price was 85 cents per sf. He thought he got a great deal.

Builder was Markin and Son who built fine houses in River Oaks. Used 3 finish carpenters to frame house- finest available. All studs cut on a diagonal then used shims to insure complete alignment.

Only 4 columns hold up pyramid roof area. All interior walls are not load baring. Free standing roof.

UH + Rice architecture students toured house during construction to get education.

Pyramid on roof was on the original plan. Colley prepared two versions of the house- one w/o pyramid. Mrs. Greer wanted the pyramid.

The pyramid is aligned true North-South. Some thought it had mystical powers.

Fountain in atrium is well over 200 years old from a restoration architect friend of R. Colley in Mexico. Georgio Boliee (sp? name sounded like)

House has 15 tons ac (in Atrium?) with many extra coils as they wanted some humidity in air in atrium. The Greers had 300 orchids in green house for atrium that were rotated continuously as they bloomed- by full time gardener.

O. Neil Ford had a brother that worked for Richard Colley. Worked with metal, brass, and wood.

O. N. Ford and R. Colley (architects for Texas Instruments projects)visited the house a number of times. ONF was a "crazy" guy. He only wanted to design, nothing else.

R. Colley gave the Greers the house plans for a wedding gift. They were married 1954 but took untill 1965-66 to finish plans.

House has no foundation issue except a wing wall not attached to slab.

Mr. Greer gave a full set plans to new owner.


(The Richard Colley Archive is located at Alexander Architectural Archive, University of Texas. The processing has not been completed. )

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