Will City Hall Be Designated a Historic Landmark?

Commission Will Vote on Resolution at Jan. 26 Meeting

by Anne Mooney / January 23, 2022

The Historic Preservation Board has brought forward its unanimous recommendation that the City of Winter Park add Winter Park City Hall to its Register of Historic Places. The Commission will vote on the resolution at the January 26 meeting. Readers are urged to let Commissioners know their thoughts by writing mayorandcommissioners@cityofwinterpark.org

Designed by Unique Architects Collaborative

Built in 1964, Winter Park City Hall was designed by the Winter Park Architects Collaborative, a group of local architects with national reputations. They were George Tuttle, Jr., John Langley, James Gamble Rogers II, Nils Schweizer, Gordon Orr, Jr., Clifford Wright and Fred Owles, Jr.

Mid-Century Modern Architecture

The City Hall building is a classic example of Mid-Century Modern architectural style. The two-story scale is compatible with the village scale of Park Avenue. Generous setbacks from Lyman and Park Avenues mirror the open green space of Central Park.

Roof Raised in 1978

Originally, the west wing of City Hall was one story, but in 1978 that structure was increased to two stories by raising the 80-ton roof some 14 feet to create the City Hall we see today.

City Hall Meets the Criteria for Historic Designation

To be designated a historic landmark, a building must possess “a quality of significance in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering, and culture. . . .” The building also must fit at least one of the following additional criteria:

  • An association with historic events, or
  • An association with the lives of significant persons, or
  • Possess high artistic values, or
  • Represent a significant and distinguishable entity . . . .

A great deal of history has been created within those walls over the past 57 years. The Architects’ Collaborative is a unique effort and the style of the building they created is significant, especially to those of us who live in Winter Park.

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    By: Anne Mooney

    Anne Mooney has assumed the editorship of the Winter Park Voice from founding editor Tom Childers.

    Mooney got her start in New York as a freelance line editor for book publishers, among them Simon & Schuster and the Clarkson Potter division of Crown Books. From New York, she and her husband and their year-old toddler moved to Washington, D.C., where the two ran a newswire service for Harper’s magazine. “We called it Network News,” said Mooney, “because it was a network of the Harper’s writers, whose work we edited into newspaper style and format and sold to papers in the top U.S. and Canadian markets. We were sort of like a tiny UPI.”

    The newswire ceased operation with the death of Mooney’s first husband, but Mooney continued to write and edit, doing freelance work for Williams Sonoma cookbooks and for local publications in D.C.

    In 2005, Mooney moved to Winter Park, where she worked as a personal chef and wrote a regular food column for a south Florida magazine. She took an active interest in Winter Park politics and was there when the Winter Park Voice was founded. She wrote occasional pieces for the Voice, including the Childers bio that this piece replaces.

    The Winter Park Voice is one of a large number of “hyper-local” publications that have sprung up across the U.S. in response to the decline of the major daily newspapers and the resulting deficit of local news coverage. The Voice’sbeat is Winter Park City Hall, and its purpose is to help the residents of our city better understand the political forces that shape our daily lives.

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