September-October 2013 | DESIGN GUIDE

DESIGN GUIDE
Jeff Schoellkopf

IN PROFILE

DESIGN GUIDE

Architect Jeff Schoellkopf returns to his roots to partake in the kickoff celebration of The Art League of Ocean City’s Sand Castle Home Tour

Written By: Jonathan Westman | Photographer: Grant L. Gursky

Architect Jeff Schoellkopf will be back in town on September 11 for the kickoff party of the 9th annual Art League of Ocean City Sand Castle Home Tour — and with good reason. The longtime Ocean City resident, who lived in Vermont for the past 20 years, designed two homes on the tour, as well as the residence of Jim and Janet Perdue, who are hosting the commencement celebration. 

“I have what I consider a dual citizenship between Vermont and Ocean City,” Jeff said with a smile. “I am in the Ocean City/Berlin area about once a month, and it’s always great to come back.”

Schoellkopf’s architectural fingerprints are evident across the Shore and include some very recognizable projects, such as the first additions to The Salisbury School (the original middle school, gymnasium and lower-school expansion in the 1980s) and many of the retail stores, corporate offices and warehouses for South Moon Under. Recently, Jeff was commissioned to design the new Bank of Ocean City locations in Berlin and 59th Street in Ocean City, the spectacular Town Center project at 67th Street and expansions at the family business, Old Pro Golf, among others.

Prominently featured on this year’s ALOC home tour are the South Point residences of the Cherrix and Zorn families, which Jeff designed. 

“My design-style then and now is very much about determining how someone lives, the anticipated patterns of their life through family and changing needs as time passes, right down to their daily routine throughout a house,” Jeff said. “With the Cherrixes’ home, we particularly focused on passive techniques to make the house more comfortable while using less energy. A lot of the homes that we design have more windows than walls and a lot of open space, so it is always a challenge to work with someone who has such an extensive and impressive art collection as Janet [Cherrix]. We gave a particular amount of attention to certain pieces in the collection to ensure we had wall spaces that would show the work well but would still convey a sense of openness and a connection to the bay with views.”

The Zorn property features one of Jeff’s signature elements, and interestingly enough, it has nothing to do with the design or structure of the home. 

“I like to create ponds on properties that have little islands in them,” Jeff said. “I’ve found that marshy, saltwater environments in proximity to fresh water attracts an abundance of wildlife for drinking water, nesting and protection from predators.” 

Another of Jeff’s hallmarks is located in South Lincoln, Vt., where he designed one of the state’s first zero-energy homes. The 1,700 sq. ft. house is heated and cooled by a heat pump, which, through some innovations, is able to function in the heating mode despite subzero temperatures. There’s also an array of solar panels atop a large shed that powers the HVAC units and all electrical loads and eliminates utility bills by producing more electricity than is consumed annually.

Other noteworthy projects of Jeff’s include a substantial community development at the popular Sugarbush ski resort in Vermont and a 22-unit co-housing development in which the homes are clustered together on a farm. The residents heat their homes through a shared wood boiler that is extremely efficient, according to Jeff.

So next time you’re driving through Worcester or Wicomico Counties, keep an eye out for innovative architectural designs — there’s a good chance they’re products from the creative mind of that dual citizen, Jeff Schoellkopf. 


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