Gilmer Park // 1996 National Register
The Gilmer Park Historic District, developed primarily between about 1909 and 1943, is a significant residential neighborhood in Salt Lake City. The area consists primarily of irregularly shaped blocks formed by curvilinear streets. The visual cohesiveness of the Gilmer Park Historic District lies in its narrow curved roads, pockets of community green spaces created by the serpentine roads and the park-like setting along Red Butte Creek, landscaped lawns and gardens, trees, and excellent examples of relatively large, uniformly-scaled historic residences.
The districts significance is based on three key factors. First, it represents the most intensive period of housing construction in the city’s history during which virtually all of the farmland on the south edge of the city, where Gilmer Park is located, was transformed into residential subdivisions. Between 1910 and 1930, Salt Lake City’s population increased fifty-one percent with more than 47,000 new residents, and suburban developments accommodated most of that growth. Gilmer Park is one of the most distinct of those subdivisions. Second, a substantial number of Gilmer Park residents were important individuals in the community and state. These included influential businessmen, politicians (including a governor), artists, architects, doctors, attorneys, educators, and religious leaders (including a president of the LDS Church). Third, many of the houses in the district are excellent local examples of important architectural styles and types.
The period of development, just after World War I, is reflected in the postwar construction boom and predominant use of Period Revival style architecture in the area. The neighborhood itself, with its curvilinear layout, represents a unique variation in subdivision design in the city. It is one of the first subdivisions in the city to deviate from the rectangular grid and follow the national trend toward more organic layouts.