Tampa Bay’s bungalow history

Become a bungalow buff with this breakdown of the historic homes seen throughout TBAY.

A bungalow in Hyde Park. It is painted light green and there is a porch out front.

A stroll through Hyde Park is incomplete without some bungalow spotting.

Photo by TBAYtoday

Table of Contents

Bungalows — you can’t miss them in the Tampa Bay area.

We did some research to find out more about the home type, how they came here, and why there are so many.

What is a bungalow?

There is no single answer to this — there are different types of bungalows with different characteristics. The most commonly seen in the Tampa Bay area is the Craftsman, defined by their shingled roofs, eaves, and verandas, but there are also Prairie style bungalows, Chicago style, and a style attributed to the Tudors, to name a few.

In short, a bungalow is a one- to one-and-a-half story home with a sloped roof, and often boasts characteristics like open floor plans, porch/verandas, large windows, and fun colors (we’ve all seen those pink homes around town).

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This is a photo of Al Lang yes, the Al Lang — from the 1920s in front of his bungalow.

How did they come to Tampa Bay?

The Craftsman became so popular in the early 20th century, they could be purchased in magazines.

Inspired by California, cities across the US started purchasing bungalows for themselves. Bungalows offered a route into cheap home + land ownership in rapidly growing cities.

This was epitomized in Tampa Bay. In St. Pete, Historic Kenwood, North Shore, and Roser Park all saw huge bungalow growth in the first few decades of the 1900s — these three neighborhoods have since been placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Bungalows also gave middle income families a route into Tampa neighborhoods like Hyde Park and Tampa Heights, along with the help of other era-defining concepts and inventions like the automobile + the streetcar.

Learn more

If you drive through Kenwood, Seminole Heights, Old Northeast, Hyde Park, or pretty much any part of TBAY, you’re sure to see examples the kitschy Florida homes.

If you want to learn more, check out these resources and tours:

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