Friday, February 27, 2009

The Cotton District

In the small college town of Starkville, Mississippi, Dan Camp, part architect/part builder/part visionary, has quietly been creating an unique community based on the principles of traditional architecture.

Starting in 1969, with a plan to build affordable housing for the local students, Dan built his first buildings in a neglected section of town on the site of a former cotton mill. Working from sketches he made from his travels throughout the South, Dan built his classically inspired buildings using local workers that produced the windows, doors, millwork and shutters.

Forty years later, “The Cotton District” continues to evolve into a highly desirable mixed-use community with a yearly arts festival that draws thousands. Enjoying nearly 100 percent occupancy, Dan is now including commercial spaces in his new structures, hoping to persuade the students to stay and open their own businesses.

Dan Camp's residence - A Charleston inspired Single House

Shutters, brick and stucco

"The Temple"

"The Four Apostles"

"The Pool House"

"The Treasurer"

"Rue Du Grand Fromage" named after the famous cheese produced by the university.

Page from Mr. Camp's sketchbook

4 comments:

ArchitectDesign said...

how wonderful -i've never heard of this! i'm off to do more research!

tartanscot said...

I went o Mississippi State and had several friends who lived in Cotton District - it's such a treat to see them again.

Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

Jennifer said...

Wonderful post! My husband and I lived in Starkville for a while, he got his grad degree in Architecture there. :)

Ryan said...

This is fantastic. It is interesting how these concepts--I'm thinking I'On in Charleston as well--take a hold and thrive in the south. Can we think of any others outside of the south that are done quite as well?