You are here

Ayres and Cologne Houses

-A A +A
1955, Peter Berndtson and Cornelia Brierly. 314 and 315 Hill Dr.

Two Pennsylvania State University (PSU) professors, Dr. Rose Cologne and Dr. Ruth Ayres, asked the Pittsburgh architects to design houses across the street from each other in a newly opened tract at the top of a hill. The houses follow organic design principles and overlook the hillside with terraces and large windows. They are made of simple materials, such as local stone, Cemesto panels, concrete block, and wood beams. The Cologne house originally had Shoji screens made by a Korean friend of the owner who had studied in Japan. The Ayres house is on two levels that step down the hillside. Berndtson and Brierly designed a third house east of State College (1956; 225 Twigs Lane) for the Braun family.

A different sort of modernist, Gregory Ain, a California architect who headed PSU's Department of Architecture between 1963 and 1967, designed a rectilinear house with vertical siding for Dr. William Ginoza (1966–1967; 962 E. McCormick Avenue). Nestled into a wooded lot, it was the last of Ain's houses to be realized, and illustrates the tension in his work between a conventional house and a work of art.

Writing Credits

Lu Donnelly et al.


What's Nearby


Lu Donnelly et al., "Ayres and Cologne Houses", [State College, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 1

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania, Lu Donnelly, H. David Brumble IV, and Franklin Toker. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2010, 353-353.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,