The side split emerged in the 1950s. With the evolution of suburbia and the positive post-war economy came the demand for bigger, better homes. The solution was “splitting” the then common ranch-style home: the garage and bedrooms were on one side and the other side of the house held the main living area, half a storey above the garage level and half a story below the bedroom level. These multiple levels were obvious from the front elevation.
Credited with initially inventing the side split, acclaimed American architect Frank Lloyd Wright first featured a split design in his Prairie-style homes in the early 1900s. While the 1950s side split was a far cry from FLW’s design, a similar philosophy was employed: open living space with half floors dividing living and private areas. Popular into the 1960s, eventually the side split fizzled as homeowners began demanding more grandeur in home design.
The presence of side splits is still prominent in neighbourhoods across the GTA. However, these neighbourhoods that were new developments in the 1950s are now established neighbourhoods with beautiful mature trees and a pedestrian-friendly feel. Today these neighbourhoods are in high demand, unfortunately this style of design isn’t.
We meet with new clients every month who are considering a side split or already own one. They love the neighbourhood and the lot size, but usually aren’t happy with the exterior façade or interior layout. With the right design, even a dated side split can be renovated to match the vision and style of the client.
Accurately titled “The Side Split”, take a look at this side split renovation we showcase in our portfolio. It’s a great example of how architectural design can completely revive a dated design. While this renovation was strictly an exterior upgrade, there are numerous possibilities for renovating the interior of a side split.
If you’re interested in adding curb appeal to your side split or renovating the interior to better meet the needs and lifestyle of your family email [email protected] or call 905-271-9100.