April 25, 2012

April 8-14 is a celebration week for the American Institute of Architects and the American Library Association.  AIA New Jersey Architects are donating copies of their Guidebook-150 Best buildings and Places to their local libraries.

The recently published book was edited by award winning architect Philip S. Kennedy-Grant, FAIA, and has stunning photographs by Sandy Noble.

“Books in our public libraries tell stories,” stated Renee Riczker, Director of the West Orange Public Library.  “This book tells the story of a select amount of New Jersey architecture and contains a great diversity of contexts and intentions,” stated Jerome Leslie Eben, AIA who is in the second year of a three year term representing New Jersey’s Chapter and Region on the Institute’s National Board.

The book has buildings like Asbury Park’s Stone Pony, the unofficial performing home base of the “Boss” (Bruce Springsteen) and the whimsical Lucy, the Margate Elephant, which has graced the end of Atlantic City’s barrier island since 1881 and is on the National Register of historic Places.  West Orange Library patrons will be most familiar with the Pleasantdale Chateau, the Gatehouse at Llewellyn Park, which leads to the Glenmont, the home of Thomas Alva Edison.  On the previous page is a stupendance night time photograph of the Edison Factory and Museum that invokes a scene from a movie that of course would not have been possible if Mr. Edison did not invent the motion picture camera!

Two copies of the book have been made available by Mr. Eben who stated that “with the celebration of the 150th year of the township just a few short months away, West Orange has a rich history of other structures that do not appear in the book.” They include but are not limited too the St. Mark’s church which Richard Upjohn, FAIA, the founder of the American Institute of Architects worked on and Civil War era homes on Forest Hill Road and many other gems.”

While not listed in the book the West Orange Library itself was designed by William E. Lehman and Mr. Eben worked on the addition early in his career with the succeeding firm Lehman Architectural Partnership.

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