New book celebrates the achievements of architect Ted Pappas

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A new book celebrates the career and influence of Jacksonville architect Ted Pappas.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville is a city that has seen incredible change over the past 60 years, and one of the men at the center of many of those changes is architect Ted Pappas.

Author Tim Gilmore recently wrote a book on Pappas and will present it at the Jacksonville Historical Society’s Fall Lecture Series on Thursday, September 1. Prior to the event, Gilmore gave First Coast News a preview of the book and detailed some of Pappas’ work.

“Without a doubt, Ted Pappas is the living architect who has had more influence on Jacksonville than anyone else,” Gilmore said.

Tim Gilmore is an author and professor of English at the FSCJ who explores the architecture of Ted Pappas in his latest book: Box Broken Open, which he wrote exploring the buildings that Pappas designed with Ted Pappas himself.

“Shooting the city with Ted Pappas was a pretty amazing thing,” Gilmore recalled, “to hear his thinking, he sees architecture very differently than most of us.”

Pappas has designed or restored over 40 buildings across Jacksonville.

“One of the things I loved about her career is that she always looks both ways, she always has, even her contemporary architecture has a deep historical thought,” Gilmore said.

Gilmore’s book about Pappas and his buildings is like leafing through the growth and development of the town.

“He restored so many structures in the center of the city,” Gilmore said, “if you can imagine the city without those structures, there would be these huge gaping holes.”

One such building is the Singleton Senior Center in Springfield.

“There’s this heavy concrete, but it’s very fluid at the same time,” Gilmore said, “the concrete has the markings of the wood it was poured on.”

Pappas’ first solo commission was St. John the Divine Greek Orthodox Church when it was originally built on Atlantic Boulevard.

“It’s a very contemporary structure, but it also has these classic details,” Gilmore said, “he works with columns like a Greek temple but they don’t look anything like that, it’s very contemporary.”

On September 1, anyone interested in the history and architecture of Jacksonville can meet Gilmore for a discussion of his book inside Old St. Andrew’s Church…and yes, Ted Pappas restored that too. building.

The Jacksonville Historical Society’s Fall Speaker Series begins Thursday, September 1 at 1:00 p.m. in Old St. Andrew’s Church at 317 A. Philip Randolph Blvd. Jacksonville Historical Society membership is free; RSVP to [email protected]
Non-members, click here to donate for a ticket; suggested donation $10.

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