Frank Lewis Hope Jr.

Architect | 1901-1994

Frank Hope Jr. arrived in San Diego in 1913. He worked with Richard Requa, Herbert Jackson, Lillian Rice and William H. Wheeler as well as rubbed elbows with Irving Gill and Frank Lloyd Wright. He launched Frank L. Hope & Associates, Architects & Engineers in 1928. The company was taken over years later by sons Frank Hope III and Charles Hope.

Large local architectural firms, who met the challenges of a rapidly growing San Diego dominated the local building explosion in the decades following World War II. Larger firms like Wheeler and Associates; Mosher & Drew; Tucker, Sadler, & Bennett; Delawie, Macy & Henderson; Deems-Martin (and Lewis) and Frank L. Hope & Associates competed against one another and firms from across the nation vying for the work.

Though the 1950's and 1960's were times of great variability in the quality of local architecture. And while the out-of-towners like Pereira Luckman, Edward Durrell Stone, Louis Kahn and Richard Neutra are often referenced in connection to this period’s cornerstone projects, works by local architects of the era are outstanding. Frank L. Hope’s career precedes that of corporate interests hiring out of town big firms for their buildings and provided an important training ground for a generation of architects.

Architect Frank Lewis Hope, Jr. (1901-1994) was born to Frank Lewis Hope Sr. (1873-1943) in 1901 in San Bernadino and arrived here in 1913 when his father moved to San Diego as a traffic agent for the Santa Fe Railway. Hope attended San Diego High School up to his sophomore year, dropping out that year to work in the Navy shipyards during World War I. Mr. Hope later went on to attend Cal for two years, and the Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh for one year but stopped short of earning a degree.

According the Los Angeles Times, “…When Frank Jr. opened his business in 1928, San Diego was still small (the 1930 census counted a population of 148,000), and the scale of development was modest compared to today. He built his business mostly by designing houses and churches in traditional styles, including a Mediterranean mode he learned during his years in the offices of San Diego architects Richard Requa, Herbert Jackson, Lillian Rice and William H. Wheeler between 1925-28. It is likely that much of his architecture education came under Requa and Jackson, with whom he began his career as an architect after working in the design department of a shipbuilding company during World War I.”

After passing the state exam, Hope launched his own firm, Frank L. Hope & Associates, Architects & Engineers located in the Spreckels Building in 1928. While he was informed by his mentors of Mediterranean stylings, Hope also had a modern side. By the late 1930s, he began designing Streamline Modern houses as well as buildings including a Ford-Lincoln automobile outlet that once stood at 12th Avenue and Broadway downtown, and Grossmont Union High School's auditorium-gymnasium. In 1940, the firm secured the remodeling of the First National Trust & Savings Bank of San Diego in order to give the building a more streamlined appearance. Many of the ornamental features of the building were removed from the exterior and replaced with a sleek tile-covered exterior atop a ceramic and black granite base.

During the Great Depression, work was hard to come by - so Hope focused on remodeling and renovating storefronts. In 1930, Hope was hired to design the Spanish-styled Carmelite Monastery in Normal Heights. From this point forward, Frank Hope Jr. worked closely with the San Diego Roman Catholic Diocese designing several buildings. These projects included the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Ocean Beach (1946), Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in City Heights (1947), The San Diego College for Women (1950) and the Immaculata at the University of San Diego (1964).

Hope was one of the few surviving direct links to a great era of modern architecture. He knew Irving Gill, San Diego's most influential architect, who died in 1936. "I was just a kid (when I met Gill)," he said. "I remember him coming in and standing by my drafting board one time. I think he was trying to show me something about a house I was working on. He kept putting landscaping around it, and I don't know if he was trying to hide it or just show me how it could look better," Hope offered.

And once he showed Frank Lloyd Wright around town when the famous architect visited San Diego. "I had him in my car," Hope recalled, "and at one point, we went by some building, and he said, 'When I die, I'll probably go down to the deepest part of hell. I invented this modern architecture, and look what they've done to it!"

Frank Hope Sr. never considered himself a gifted designer. His son Frank Hope III, who graduated with an architecture degree from UC Berkeley, was "far ahead of me," according to the Hope patriarch.

Hope, who retired in 1966, continued to watch the next generation – Frank Hope III, an architect, and Charles 'Chuck' B. Hope, a structural engineer - take over ownership of the company and expand it. The Hope firm peaked in size in the 1980s with 150 employees. Noted designers Gary Allen (who designed San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium), C.W. Kim and Robert Bell all cut their teeth under the Hope banner. While Hope Jr. only caught the beginning of San Diego's modern building boom, Frank III headed the company during the city's 1970s and 1980s explosion.

Partial List of San Diego Projects

Aquarium Museum Building (ca. 1950)
Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Arts & Crafts Press Building (1963)

Bruce, Dr. Clinic Building
San Diego

Bullard, Dr. Clinic Building
San Diego

Bureau of Commercial Fisheries Research Laboratory (1963)
Scripps Institute of Oceanography

Burnham Building (1962)
1555 6th Avenue

Cabrillo National Monument Visitors Center (1966)
Cabrillo Monument, Point Loma

Carmelite Monastery of San Diego (1930)
Normal Heights

Children’s Hospital, Diagnostic and Treatment Center and New Child Guidance Clinic (1968)
San Diego

Coronado Hospital (1972)

Courthouse Facility for the County of San Diego (1956)
San Diego
*Designed by Hamill, Hope, Lykos, Wheeler, Freeland and Associated Architects and Engineers

Dana Junior High School (1941)
1775 Chatsworth Blvd, Point Loma

Fares Co. Inc.
El Cajon Blvd.

Federal Bureau of Prisons
Federal Youth Center, Pleasanton CA

Fenton, Miss L. G., Residence (1928)
Plumosa Park, lot 9, block M

First Federal Savings and Loan Branch (1963)
Broadway & H, Chula Vista

First National Bank Building (formerly Columbia Centre)
Columbia Street

First National Bank
D Street, Encinitas

Ford-Lincoln Store (AKA City Motors Ford) (late 1930s)
12th Avenue and Broadway – demolished

FutureCraft Home AKA Chambers Steel House (1959)
4196 Eastridge Drive, La Mesa
First light-steel House in San Diego
Published in San Diego & Point March, 1959

Golden, M.H. Residence
3614 Carleton

Grossmont Union High School Auditorium-Gymnasium (1935-37)
La Mesa
*Works Projects Administration (WPA) project

Hallmark House for Mitchell Realty (1962)
6th & Cedar

Hogle Building
San Diego

Holy Cross Mausoleum (1938, 1963-1964)
San Diego

Home Federal Savings and Loan Association (1955)
San Diego

Home Federal Savings and Loan Association (1963)
707 Broadway, San Diego

Hope, Frank and Barbara Jr. Residence (1967)
3430 Bangor Place

Hope Office Building Building (1961)
1447 Sixth Avenue, San Diego

Hope, Chuck B. Residence (ca. 1962)
676 Albion Street, Point Loma

Hope, Frank L. Residence (1956)
371 San Fernando, Point Loma

Hope, Mr. and Mrs. Frank L., Residence (1947)
lots 14 and 15, block 126, Del Mar

Horace Mann Junior High School
54th Street, San Diego

Hyatt La Jolla
La Jolla

Hyatt Torrey Pines
La Jolla

Immaculata Chapel (1964)
University of San Diego, Linda Vista

Immaculate Conception Church (1933)
Wright Street east of Magnolia, San Diego

Immaculate Conception Church (1936)
Northeast corner of San Diego Ave. and Twiggs Street

Kearny Mesa Junior College (ca. 1961)
7250 Mesa College Drive, San Diego

Kearny Senior High School and additions (1954-55)
Wellington & Tecolote, Linda Vista

La Jolla Cancer Research Center (1985)
La Jolla

La Jolla Presbyterian Church, Fellowship Hall (1961 and 1964-65)
La Jolla

Marriott Hotel
Next to the San Diego Convention Center

May Company (1959)
Mission Valley
Designed by Bill Lewis for LA-based AC MArtin (later of Deems-Lewis), Hope 'backstopped' the project locally

McGill Hall AKA Psychology Building (1969)
John Muir College Campus at U.C. San Diego

Medical Building
First and Laurel, San Diego

Mercy Hospital
4077 5th Avenue, San Diego

Mercy Hospital expansion (1966-1990)
San Diego

Mesa Vista Psychiatric Hospital (1963)
San Diego

Mission Hills Congregational Church Apartment Tower (1968)
Fort Stockton and Ibis Streets, Mission Hills

National Cash Register Co. Electronics Facility (NCR) (1969)
Rancho Bernardo

National Steel & Shipbuilding Corp Office Building
28th & Harbor Drive, San Diego

Naval Electronics Maintenance School
San Diego

Naval Training Center, Officer's Quarters
San Diego

Nexus Science Center
San Diego

Oceanside Federal Savings & Loan (1967)
716 Mission Avenue, Oceanside

Oliver, Lawrence Residence (1934)
815 Armada Terrace, Point Loma.

Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church (1947)
Orange & Marlborough, City Heights

Pacific Telephone
Oceanside Service Facility

Pacific Telephone (1959)
Chatsworth & Tennyson, Point Loma

Palomar Memorial Hospital (1953-1974)

Pastore, Mr. Caesar, store building (1936)
1st and Juniper Streets, San Diego

Penguin House, San Diego Zoo (1959)
w/ zoo designer Charles Faust

Pickford, Mr. H. T. Apartment Hotel (1929)

Point Loma Community Presbyterian Church (1955)
Point Loma

Point Loma High School Additions (1955)
2335 Chatsworth Blvd, Point Loma

Pomerado Hospital (1977)
Pomerado Road, Poway

Private Residence (1975)
10601 Noakes Road, La Mesa

Rancho Bernardo Villas
Rancho Bernardo

Rancho Santa Fe Association (1954)
Rancho Santa Fe

Rodefer Hills (1953-55)

Rosary Girl's High School
42nd & Polk, San Diego

Sacred Heart Catholic Church (1946)
Ocean Beach

Saint Charles Chapel Details (1937)

Saint Didacus Church (1927)
Southwest Corner Felton and Collier Streets

Saint Joseph’s Church Alterations (1931)

San Diego Centre City Project (1960 – 1964)
Designed by Curtis, Hope, Lodge and Freeland

San Diego City College
San Diego

San Diego College for Women (1950)
Alcala Park, Linda Vista

San Diego Convention Hall
San Diego

San Diego High School Technical Arts Building
San Diego

San Diego Rotary Club
San Diego

San Diego Stadium (1967)
9449 Friars Road, Mission Valley
*AIA National Honor Award

San Diego Centre City Community Concourse, Convention Facility (1962)
San Diego

San Diego State College Science Building
College Area

San Diego State College Music Building
College Area

San Diego Yacht Club, V. Commodore (1955)

San Marcos Post Office
San Marcos

Santa Fe City Offices (1936)
1200 Fifth Avenue (NW Corner at B Street) - demolished

Scripps Clinic-Molecular Biology Building (1983)
La Jolla

Scripps Hydraulics Lab (1964)
Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Scripps Memorial Hospital (1949, 1975)
La Jolla

Seaport Village
San Diego

Security First National Bank (1962)
1044 Wall Street, La Jolla

Security Trust & Savings Bank

Sharp, Donald N. Memorial Hospital Maternity Wing (1961)
Linda Vista

Sharp, Donald N. Memorial Community Hospital (1967-1975)
Linda Vista

Silver Strand State Beach Campground

Simpson, Mr. and Mrs. Eddie, Apartment House (1929)
San Diego

Solar Aircraft Company (1955-1960)
Harbor Drive, San Diego

St. Patrick’s Catholic Church (1928)

Streamline Modern Houses (late 1930s)
Point Loma

Stromberg-Carlson (1959)
Hancock Street, Point Loma

Tappan, Mr. and Mrs. W.N. Residence (1928)
Loma Portal, Point Loma

Timken Museum AKA Putnam Foundation, Timken Gallery (1962-1965)
Balboa Park

Travelodge Corporation International Headquarters (1962)
250 S. Travelodge Drive, El Cajon

Trinity Episcopal Church
845 Chestnut Street, Escondido

Trinity Lutheran Church (1959)
7210 Lisbon Street, San Diego

Turrentine Building (1963)
4th & A Streets, San Diego
*Pre-cast granite faced concrete block 1-story building.

United California Bank Building
345 B Street, San Diego

United States National Bank
2nd Ave and Broadway, San Diego

University of San Diego
Linda Vista

Utschig, Harold H. Residence
6089 La Jolla Scenic Drive, La Jolla

Valley Ho Restaurant
Mission Valley

Veteran's Administration Hospital
La Jolla