McLanahan and Bencker


6701 North Broad Street

Philadelphia, PA

Built: 1924

 The Oak Lane Trust Bank is a precursor to Art Deco.  Cast metal lamps and stripped masonry construction can be characterized as Art Deco but are more aptly described as modern.  The building lacks any specific ornament and the lower windows' curved tops are not geometrically defined.  The front tower is modern but specifically Deco and has the feel of the tower of Saarinen's Helsinki Station.







C/O AIA/T Square 1924

1901 Walnut Street

Philadelphia, PA








McLanahan and Bencker's Rittenhouse Square apartments was designed prior to the Paris exposition and cannot technically be Art Deco, though since this term can be arbitrarily used depending on the date, the building can be seen as early Art Deco.  Geometrical clarity at the top of the building is the Deco ornamentation.  Strong vertical columns protrude into the sky and can be seen as inverted arches.  Cast into the brick work are courses of terra cotta with rich polychrome and an accented, geometric cornice.  From the top three floors downward, 1901 Walnut is a stripped Beaux-Arts building.  It has a characteristic light well, slightly verticized brick towers and a pediment of stripped classical masonry.  Generally a plain design, McLanahan and Bencker do not fully embrace Art Deco ornamentation on this building, but keep the lower, most visible floors classically massed without decoration.


Residential Buildings