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Decorated Oblong Box

Colonial-style, oblong gas station, located in Lexington. Changes to gasoline station design occurred again in the mid-1960s.  This time, however, the alterations were done to conform with prevailing public mood.  Put simply, the freewheeling glittery designs of the 1950s had met with opposition from city planning and zoning officials and the general public alike because they did not harmonize with their surroundings.  Most gas station owners willingly softened their station designs by removing the tilting display windows and giant pylons and adding colonial-style architectural elements.  The standard oblong box, then, was redecorated with Roman columns; sheltered by side gable or mansard roofs; and covered in cedar shake shingles.  New stations were constructed using the rectangular shape, but incorporated ranch house architectural features.  The colonial-style oblong box pictured here is located on U.S. 25 in Lexington (Fayette County).  The station has most of the standard design elements utilized to soften the stark white “ice-box” stations of the 1950s, including the front pediment and rooftop cupola.


Last Updated 3/17/2008