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Shorthand House

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1997, François de Menil. 2233 University Blvd.

The white stucco finishes, planar walls, and flat-roofed profiles of the Shorthand House radiate assurance in the 1930s neighborhood of Southgate, which adjoins the Rice University campus. Menil planned the house as a rectangular bar, with east-facing windows overlooking a side courtyard shielded from the street by a one-story garage. Framed by the live oak trees lining University Boulevard, the house stands out from neighboring houses, without diminishing them, because of its radiant proportions. The nickname “Shorthand” refers to Menil's ingenious interior plan, which enables spaces to be partitioned or conjoined.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Shorthand House", [Houston, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: Central, South, and Gulf Coast, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 346-346.

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