One of Albany’s most popular suburbs, Delmar (in the township of Bethlehem) is filled with Colonials and capes, plus plenty of ranches (some raised). There’s the occasional shed-style contemporary and a few rare gems…
West Hill was developed in the late 1940s by GE engineers who had initiative and vision to spare, plus more than a bit of frustration about other housing options. They formed a corporation that purchased some 270 acres, which to this day remains a nature preserve that surrounds the community of about 85 homes. The residencies are in a variety of styles, but it’s a treasure trove for mid-century lovers. While some of the homes were designed by the owners themselves, there are also works by architects John M. Johansen (one of the famed Harvard Five), Victor Civkin (pioneer of the split level) and Schenectady’s own Eric Fisher.
There are only about 20 city blocks in the neighborhood known as Hexam Gardens, which is bordered by Troy-Schenectady Road (Rt 7), Balltown Road and St. David’s Lane. Quiet tree-lined streets as far as the eye can see. And some charming ranches and splits as well, mostly dating from the ’60s and ’70s.
Okay, so these homes aren’t modernist in any strict sense. But they’re still darned cool.
The Spanish theme – with stucco walls inside and out, tile roofs and trim, and vaulted ceilings – is played out in 26 homes on South Main, Woodlawn and Hansen Avenues. They were built by Dan Winchester between 1928 and 1930. Read more about the history in this 2009 piece in the Times Union.
Though it feels like a rather mid-century suburb of Albany, the history of East Greenbush dates back to the Patroon settlements in the early 1600s. Here are a few stylish homes in the neighborhood just northwest of the Columbia Turnpike (Rts 9 & 20). There are a number of more grand contemporary residences on wooded lots on Elliott and Luther Roads a bit to the north.
Saratoga is a city that takes good care of its historic structures, though, at least if they’re Victorians. But if homes are just somewhat old, they’re sometimes simply torn down and replaced, especially if they’re at prime locations like 5th Avenue, where houses back on to the Oklahoma Track.