MODERN MOVEMENT

STREAMLINE MODERNE (1930 1955)

Streamline Moderne is closely related to Art Deco, but the emphasis is on horizontal plane. The machine age is still present in decorative reference. Streamline Moderne places an emphasis on the movements found in automobiles, planes, trains and ships. The horizontal lines of Streamline Moderne were also incorporated into the design of the machines in which they found reference. Zoom and speed are embodied in the design of the buildings. Art Moderne is another term used for this style.

Primary Stylistic Features
  • Horizontal massing.
  • Flat roofs with small parapets.
  • Asymmetrical façade.
  • Concrete or stucco exterior finish.
  • Speed bands or other horizontal emphasis.
Secondary Stylistic Features
  • Curved building corners.
  • Metal sash windows, sometimes found in ribbons to accentuate the horizontal.
  • Corner windows.
  • Glass brick.
  • Rounded porthole windows
  • Cantilevered awnings (sometimes curved).

Evaluation Considerations

Streamline Moderne is a rare building type in Alaska so latitude should be given when assessing their architectural significance. Clusters of this building type do not exist. In most cases, Streamline Moderne buildings will be eligible individually. In order to be eligible, Streamline Moderne buildings must exhibit all the primary characteristics, but not all the secondary characteristics. Streamline Modernes can contribute to the eligibility of a district that has a variety of architectural styles.


For Further Information

Wrenick, Frank E., The Streamline Era Greyhound Terminal: The Architecture of W. S. Arrasmith, Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2007.

Jakle, John, and Keith A. Sculle, The Gas Station in America: Creating the North American Landscape, Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994.