The Neighborhood Around 173

A Brief Tour

Walking Linus the other day it dawned on me, I've never shown a tour of the neighborhood.  I really don't have the capacity or interest in doing a video tour, but I thought I would pick out a few spots throughout and share them here.  

The Maroon House

I'll do a right proper introduction to the neighborhood in a minute, but I first want to take a minute to point out what was once one of my favorite houses - this little maroon gem.  I think the colors, which are evocative of my childhood home, is a subliminally emotional draw for me, and I love the white shutters.  Aside from that, it's just a cute little place with the stone veneered porch, and the nice, sloping front yard.  The only downside is, the house is jammed very tightly between two other houses - very tightly.  

Blue Collar

I grew up with blue collar parents in a blue collar house, in a blue collar neighborhood , in a blue collar town.  I love that town, and my parents and that town ingrained in me the foundations of who I am.  So when looking for a new job, city and home, I knew I would likely live much the same as in my youth - with a strong foundation of hard work, frugality and diligence.  

I love my Hometown because it is where I grew up… the home of my parents and sweet family and friends. I am forever thankful for my heritage.  - Lisa Bryant

Moving On In Life

When I moved to my adopted city, 173 was still just a dream home ownership seemed almost unattainable. But I had recently transitioned from the military to college and to a new career as a Registered Nurse, and financial stability was a mere couple years away.  When it came, I had been chomping at the bit long enough for a house of my own - and the Great American Dream was finally in reach!  I already wrote about a couple houses that were considered before buying 173 - the McDonald House and the Tremont House, but 173 was always the frontrunner and won out by a longshot!  Here's the earliest shot from 1997.

The Enclave

So, it's time to talk about the neighborhood.  I guess the first thing that might give you a sense of the neighborhood is to say that the neighborhood amounts to a kind of enclave.  

That's not to be confused with a gated community or anything of the kind - far from it.  173 is nestled in the furthest southern reaches of our fair city, and is bounded by an interstate highway and a main thoroughfare and stretches 2.5 by 3.5 blocks.  

In the picture below, you can see the entire length of 173's street.  That's another great thing about the neighborhood - all the streets dead-end, so there's little traffic and (of course) no through-traffic!  

Coming into the enclave there's a little island, which can be glimpsed on the right side of this next picture, with a "No Trucks" sign.  There's a small tree in there, and some flowers in the summer.

You've made this day a special day, by just your being you. There's no person in the world like you, and I like you just the way you are. - Fred Rogers

Onto the Houses

I think a good part of why I wanted to write this post is that the neighborhood is packed with a very diverse array of architectural styles of houses.  Here are some of my favorite (aside from 173 of course).  Here's an interesting house, and no, there aren't architectural fractures, the picture was taken from Google Streetview.  The things I like about this house are the color (hmm, I think my childhood home really left its mark on me) and the siding.  The siding is that faux brick asphalt siding, and it's in amazing condition, and it always gives me a nostalgic feeling...

Asphalt building siding became a popular building renovation alternative to painting weathered or rotted wood clapboard or wood shingle siding as early as the 1930's, becoming popular in the 1940's and the 1950's in North America where it was used both for low-cost housing and for covering the deteriorated exterior. - Find Any Answer

Here's a neat shot. In this picture you can see a small Dutch Revival nestled between two Buffalo Doubles.

At the turn of the 20th century, the Buffalo Double provided a third of the housing structures and an even greater percentage of housing units in Buffalo. The two floor/two flat houses in Buffalo were built during the economic and industrial heyday of the city, from about 1890 to 1929. It was about that time their popularity reached across the rest of New York state.

Some good reads about being blue collar 
Blue Collar Brilliance by Mike Rose in The American Scholar
What Blue Collar America Can Teach Us About Leadership by Brian Rashid 
This Collar Blue and Other Poems by Zachary Dilks  
Here's some posts about my childhood home

Then there's this giant midcentury modern duplex.  Both halves are simply a mirror of the other, and there's a few times I've walked by at night and could see in (don't you even judge me - you do the same thing and you know it!).  Both sides have a gigantic stone fireplace - absolutely stunning!

Then there's the surprising, slightly odd homes like this ranch style with the essentially subterranean garage.  As a matter of fact, that kind of garage is in several houses in the neighborhood. 

We have a few Craftsman style homes too, I think the is the cutest.  The lady that lives there is constantly working in her yard and it always shows!  I love the exposed rafter tails!

And if it's the beach you're in the mood for, this little bungalow was refurbished by the owner's sons as a retirement place for their mother.  It has such a beachy feel, now if only we could have a lake in the neighborhood.

And what neighborhood is complete without an American Foursquare?  The house next to my childhood home is a Foursquare, so I've always had an affinity toward them.

Builders in the early 20th century referred to this type as “truly American . . . the square type of modern home,” “massive” and “conservative.” Whether done plain or embellished with Prairie School, Arts and Crafts, or Colonial Revival details, the Foursquare (1895–1929) was an economical house to build—and suited to small lots, prefab parts, and the housing boom. - Old House Online

Then there's this little gem.  I'm not sure if it's the color, or the white shutters or what else it might be, but this house always looks so neat and tidy, it's always been an eye-catcher!

And every time I walk past this little bungalow I stop and admire the two shades of green and how crsip this place looks too!  Sorry the picture's bit wonky but it's another Streetview shot.  It's hard to stand out in front of someone else's house taking pictures - kinda creepy really, so Google it is sometimes!

So that's a little tour around the neighborhood surrounding 173.  I hope you enjoyed, and by the way - not that I'm biased or anything, but I still think this is the nicest house in the neighborhood:

Stay safe out there!
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