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The Encanto Manor Historic District is a suburban neighborhood located approximately two miles north/northwest of downtown Phoenix. Situated along the northern edge of Encanto Park Golf Course, Encanto Manor is a narrow, roughly rectangular neighborhood one-and-a-half to two blocks wide by four blocks long. This district encompasses two residential subdivisions – Encanto Manor and Encanto Dell – both platted in 1945.
It is approximately thirty acres in size and contains 85 resources, including 83 domestic properties, one church, the Encanto Community Church, and its parish house currently used as the church office. Of the resources, 79 (93%) are considered contributing, and 6 (7%) are noncontributing. Most of the resources in the district were built between 1945 and 1950, and the majority of the houses are Ranch or Transitional Ranch in style. Two major exceptions are the 1911 James W. Dorris House, a Mission Revival dwelling, and the Encanto Community Church, a 1950 Mediterranean Revival style church.
The boundaries of the National Register district roughly correspond to the boundaries of a Phoenix local historic district of the same name.
The Encanto Manor Historic District is situated between 7th and 15th Avenues, and between Thomas Road and both the Encanto Park Golf Course and Windsor Avenue. South of Encanto Manor lies the Encanto Park Golf Course and, across Windsor Avenue, is Encanto Vista Historic District, another postwar neighborhood. Encanto Park is a large municipal park containing two nine-hole golf courses, an amusement park, and a small lake. It is located immediately adjacent to Encanto Manor, stretching nearly the entire length of the district and creating most of its southern boundary. Twenty-six of the properties directly abut the golf course, and none of the houses lie more than one block away from it. To the east of Encanto Manor is 7th Avenue, a six-lane northsouth thoroughfare lined primarily with commercial properties, apartment buildings, and a medical center. To the north of Encanto Manor, across Thomas Road, is Phoenix College and the Campus Vista Historic District. West of Encanto Manor, across 15th Avenue, is the Margarita Place Historic District (National Register 2007), another residential neighborhood. A short distance northwest of Encanto Manor is the North Encanto Historic District, which was platted in 1939 and built out in the postwar period.
The streets in Encanto Manor are generally straight and dominant along the east-west axis, which has named streets. Thomas Road is a six-lane thoroughfare that creates the district’s northern boundary, stretching between 15th and 7th Avenues. The south lane of Thomas Road, which is adjacent to Encanto Manor, is a frontage road separated from the other five lanes by a privacy wall. The original neighborhood plat identifies it as “Parkview Drive.” Edgemont Avenue runs east through the district before terminating at 8th Avenue; the south side of Edgemont Avenue abuts the golf course. Windsor Avenue begins at 7th Avenue and terminates in a cul-de-sac near the golf course; only two properties on the north side of Windsor Avenue are included in the district. (Windsor Avenue’s south side is in the Encanto Vista Subdivision, a separate historic district.) The north-south streets are numbered and include, from east to west, 7th, 8th, 11th, 13th and 15th Avenues. Seventh Avenue is a major thoroughfare that provides access to Windsor Avenue and Thomas Road. Eighth Avenue runs between Thomas Road and Edgemont Avenue. Both 11th and 15th Avenues run only between Thomas Road and Edgemont Avenue, and have slight curves that mirror one another. Fifteenth Avenue forms the district’s western boundary and provides access to Thomas Road and Edgemont Avenue. No alleys are present in the district.
The streetscapes in Encanto Manor are uniform, with setbacks, massing and landscaping contributing to a coherent appearance. The streets are wide enough to permit on-street parking. They are paved in asphalt and have rolled concrete curbs, except on Thomas Road where no curbing is present. The average lot size is 8,700 square feet, 65-80 feet wide by 135 feet deep. All of the houses in Encanto Manor except the Dorris House are one story in height; they are all similarly sized, with low horizontal massing. They are set back a uniform 40 feet from the street. There are very few fences or walls in the front yards, which creates a feeling of openness. Taller walls or fences are commonly found in side and rear yards. A large majority of lots in the district have broad front lawns, with neatly manicured hedges, low flower beds, and mature palm, Palo Verde, or pine trees. A few lots are xeriscaped, with low water use native plants and crushed gravel. Most lots have straight concrete driveways, although some are curvilinear. Some of the driveways have been widened. Sidewalks are present along all but Thomas Road. All sidewalks directly abut the road, except on 15th Avenue where a tree lawn separates the sidewalk and street. Walkways provide access to the porch from either the sidewalk or driveway and are generally poured concrete, although some are brick or stone. There are streetlights along 7th Avenue and Thomas Road (north of the privacy wall), in the cul-de-sac of Windsor Avenue, and at the intersection of Edgemont Avenue with 8th, 11th and 13th Avenues. No other street furniture is found.
As stated, 83 of the 85 resources in Encanto Manor are single-family houses. Although the James W. Dorris House now serves various church functions, such as offices and classrooms, it retains its domestic appearance and is analyzed as such. The Encanto Community Church is a separate property. The remaining houses in the district display various styles and plans; however, they were largely built during a fourteen-year span between 1946 and 1959 and possess an architectural unity that contributes to the coherence of the streetscape. With the exception of the Mission Revival style Dorris House (2710 N. 7th Avenue; 1911), discussed later, all houses are one story in height and in the Transitional Ranch or Ranch style. The great majority of these lack specific revival detail or other overt ornamentation. The Transitional Ranch is, as the name implies, a transitional form that contains elements of the bungalow house type and the Ranch house. Transitional Ranches are generally smaller than Ranch houses, with more centralized plans and simpler fenestration. They are often, but not always, earlier than Ranch houses. Ranch houses tend to have longer, more linear plans and a more horizontal emphasis.
The vast majority of the houses, approximately 82%, are Transitional Ranch or Ranch style. Several stylistic variations are found, including hipped and gabled roofs. Several Ranch style houses incorporate Revival style elements or other stylistic features to the basic Ranch plan; these details include French Provincial, Colonial Revival, Spanish Colonial and Moderne. All of the Ranch style houses are have low, horizontal massing. Over 2/3 of the Ranch houses have low- to medium-pitched hipped roofs. Other roof forms include gable, gable-onhip, and hip-on-gable. The majority of gabled houses have L-shaped plans with a shallow front ell, although side-gabled rectangular and, less commonly, U-shaped plans are found. The majority of hipped roof houses have a more irregular roof form and centrally-massed appearance. Hipped roof forms often have a main central hip and either multiple intersecting hips corresponding to façade setbacks, or multiple hipped ells. Some of the later houses have integral garages or carports that further elongate their facades, but many of the district’s houses have detached garages towards the rear of the lot. In general, detached garages match the house, with similar roof forms and construction materials.
Construction materials and other design elements are largely consistent throughout the district, as well. The majority of the houses have masonry construction, with exposed or painted brick, exposed or painted block, or stuccoed exterior walls. Approximately half of the houses have exposed brick exteriors, with running bond or Flemish bond patterns. Approximately 30% of houses have painted masonry, and about 10% are stucco, although several of the stucco houses originally had exposed masonry finishes. A small number of houses have exposed slump block, razor stone or siding. The most common roofing material is asphalt shingle, and many of the houses feature tiled ridgelines. Clay or concrete tile roofs are found on approximately 10% of houses. The overwhelming majority of windows in the district are steel casement. A few have replacement vinyl sashes, and others have replacement glass in their original sash. Most of the houses have large window openings, including fixed and operational sash picture windows in various configurations. In general, the Transitional Ranch houses have slightly smaller window openings and simpler window types. The Ranch houses often feature a decorative window type such as corner window, bulls-eye, bay, or sidelight.
Porches are found on most of the houses, but vary in size and configuration. As is common for the Ranch style, most porches are small and function more as entry shelters. Many of the porches are located under cornice overhangs along the front façade, and are found both with and without porch supports. Others are flator shed-roofed corner porches located at the junction of the ells. Some porches are simply shed-roofed hoods extending from the roof edge. In a few instances, there are more substantial inset porches. Several houses have carports, either inset or attached. Porch and carport supports are most commonly iron or 4x4 wood posts, although some brick piers are found. Rear patios are found district-wide.
The district contains a core palette of ornamental details that are used in various combinations on each house. This creates both individuality and consistency. Commonly found ornamental details include exposed rafter ends, shutters, and contrasting wainscoting wherein the wainscot brick has a different brick size or bond than the walls. Also found are contrasting brick colors or razor stone in small areas such as entry surrounds. Low brick or block planters are found at many houses, usually constructed in the same material as the house. Prominent chimneys are architectural features on many houses. Also found in the district are bulls-eye windows, glass block windows, low patio walls and cupolas.
Many Ranches in the district have simple forms and limited ornamental detail. A typical example of the basic hipped Ranch is 1307 W. Thomas Road, which is a brick house with a cross-hipped roof, steel casement window, and a brick patio wall. A simple gabled Ranch design is found at 1135 W. Thomas Road. It is Lshaped with the front ell featuring a front-gable. It has steel casement windows with decorative shutters, brick walls, and an inset porch with a decorative wood post.
The most common Ranch variation found in the district is the French Provincial Ranch. A good example is found in 1320 W. Edgemont Avenue which is a brick house with a stepped footprint and multiple intersecting hip roofs. A large picture window is found on the front-most volume, and elsewhere steel casement windows are found. Two corner casement windows are a prominent feature. The house has a deeply inset entry porch supported by metal posts, and a detached garage in the rear.
A small number of other Ranch styles are present in Encanto Manor. There is a Colonial Revival Ranch at 855 W. Edgemont Avenue. This house has a wood-shingled, intersecting gable roof with the front ell functioning as a side-entrance, two-bay garage. The walls are asphalt shingle and shutters are present at the windows. A prominent front window has a slight dormer that lends this house its Colonial Revival Ranch style. The house at 811 W. Thomas Road is best described as a California Ranch in that it has multiple wall materials. It has an L-shaped plan with the front ell having exposed brick. This ell has a wainscot of running bond patterned brick which is separated with a string course from Flemish bond patterned brick above. The recessed section, has vertical wood siding. A Moderne Ranch house is found at 1141 W. Thomas Road. This brick house has three curved corners on its front façade, all which feature curved glass block windows. Finally, the house at 1151 W. Thomas Road is a Modern Ranch. This rectangular-shaped house has elongated proportions and a gable roof with integrated carport.
A typical Transitional Ranch is found at 2819 N. 8th Avenue. Built of exposed Flemish bond brick, the house has compact massing and a main hip roof with an intersecting hipped ell. It has steel casement windows with a prominent bay window present on the front ell, and a corner window on the recessed wall. A shed roof covers the front entrance which is supported by decorative metal posts.
Encanto Manor contains only one house that is not Ranch or Transitional Ranch in style; James W. Dorris’s 1911 house at 2710 N. 7th Avenue. Dorris had this two-story house built shortly after he purchased the 320- acre parcel that includes present day Encanto Manor. The Mission Revival style residence has stucco walls and an intersecting hip roof with clay tile. It has an integrated flower box and porch surround typical of its style.
Of the 85 resources in the district, only two were built after 1959. These two are considered noncontributing due to their nonhistoric construction. Both, however, are Ranch in style and are compatible with the neighborhood’s streetscapes. The house at 2813 N. 8th Avenue was built in 1974. It is a Spanish Colonial Ranch with stucco walls and a tile roof. The house at 807 W. Thomas Road was built in 1976. It is a rectangular Ranch house built of exposed slump block and covered with a side-gabled roof with asphalt shingles.
There are eleven noncontributing houses in the district. As noted, two of them are noncontributing due to age. The remainder are noncontributing due to alterations and/or additions. An example of an alteration can be found at 1109 W. Edgemont Avenue where both the porch posts and windows were replaced with noncompatible materials. The Ranch style house at 825 W. Edgemont Avenue was altered by the addition of a classical entrance. An example of a house altered by an addition can be found at 1124 W. Edgemont Avenue where a two-car garage was added onto the front of the house.
The one nonresidential resource in Encanto Manor is a religious property located at the perimeter of the district. The Encanto Community Church is located at 2710 N. 7th Avenue, at Windsor Avenue. This Mediterranean Revival style church was constructed in 1950 and is compatible with the character of the neighborhood. It has a clay tile, gable roof and stucco walls. Although it occupies a site with the Dorris House, it is not historically associated with the Mission Revival style building.
The Encanto Manor Historic District is a remarkably intact collection of primarily postwar houses, with 79 resources, or 93%, contributing to the district. These are carefully-designed houses with small stylistic variations that keep the neighborhood heterogeneous. However, the similarities in size, setback, and massing and materials create coherent streetscapes with excellent overall integrity. Following is an inventory of properties that details the dates of construction, basic style, and contributing status of each of the resources in Encanto Manor Historic District.