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128-6477 Colony House Motor Lodge

Colony House Motor Lodge
Photo credit: Kate Kronau, 2022

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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 12/08/2022

Located on Franklin Road SW, US Route 220 in the city of Roanoke, the Colony House Motor Lodge comprises two motel buildings, a motel office with a porte-cochere, and a swimming pool. Located on the outskirts of Roanoke when it was built, the motor lodge was strategically sited along a major arterial route connecting the city to areas further south and west. Designed by the Salem firm of Kinsey and Motley, Architects, the buildings reflect influences from the Googie style with cantilevered, folded plate roofs that create a repetitive geometric gable motif and demarcate the bays of each building. Various design features of the motor lodge exhibit the influence of Frank Lloyd Wright on the architects. Site features that include historic signage, breeze block walls, fencing, paved parking areas with curbing, and retaining walls – many of which were painted green – also serve to unify the property and identify its amenities. Dramatically juxtaposed against a steep and wooded hillside, the motor lodge is an excellent example of mid-20th century roadside architecture designed to catch the eye of passing motorists. The Colony House Motor Lodge continuously operated as a motel from 1959 until 2018, when descendants of the original developers, Richard and Glover Trent, sold the property.

Many properties listed in the registers are private dwellings and are not open to the public, however many are visible from the public right-of-way. Please be respectful of owner privacy.

VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

Updated: December 8, 2022