Jonathan Dyer, 68, architect

Jonathan Dyer
Jonathan Dyer
Posted: May 12, 2014

Jonathan Dyer, 68, of Wynnewood, a longtime architect in the Philadelphia area, died Sunday, May 4, of lymphoma at home.

Born in Bryn Mawr, Mr. Dyer was a graduate of the Haverford School and Princeton University. In 1967, he got his start working for the architectural firm Vincent G. Kling & Associates.

He designed master plans for Washington National (now Reagan National) Airport and Philadelphia International Airport.

In 1971, Mr. Dyer and his family moved to London so he could join T.P. Bennett & Son, a firm that specialized in urban public projects.

He returned to the Main Line 1973 and began working for EwingCole as a project director for building at the Meadowlands Racetrack, the Montgomery County-Norristown Public Library, Hahnemann Hospital, and Lankenau Hospital.

In 1976, with his first wife, Josephine D. Heyward, and childhood friend Stephen Stack, Mr. Dyer started Londinium Ltd., an import business on Lancaster Avenue in Bryn Mawr.

The firm imported antiques, prints, wool clothing, crafts, food, glassware, and other products from Great Britain, and quickly drew shoppers on the Main Line.

In 1979, Mr. Dyer joined the Space Data Group, which grew into Space Design Inc. (SDI), where he served as president until retiring in 2013. He designed and managed the documentation and contract administration of more than $1.5 billion worth of construction projects encompassing 50 million square feet of space.

"They did work especially for law firms in Center City," said his wife, Gina Abrevaya Dyer.

A pioneer in the use of computer-assisted design in Philadelphia, SDI developed and maintained a database of buildings in the region. Mr. Dyer oversaw building projects for the Boston Stock Exchange, Philadelphia Stock Exchange, Quaker Chemical, and Hesser College near Manchester, N.H.

Up until his death, Mr. Dyer worked at home as an architect offering management services aimed at maintaining the historic integrity of buildings. He was licensed to practice in a dozen states.

He was a member of the Uniform Construction Code Appeals Board for Lower Merion Township, a former vice president of the Wynnewood Civic Association, and a former president of the Gladwyne Civic Association.

An avid golfer, Mr. Dyer was a member of the Merion Golf Club and the Bachelors Barge Club on Kelly Drive. He also was an accomplished photographer.

He will be remembered for his sense of humor and for being "warm, generous, and kind," his wife said.

Beside his wife of 21 years, he is survived by a daughter, Elizabeth Stuart Dyer Mesires; sons Alexander Heyward, Samuel Wallace, and William Henry; a brother; and three grandchildren. He was divorced from his first wife, who survives.

A memorial service was held Saturday.

Contributions may be made to the Haverford School, 450 Lancaster Ave., Haverford, Pa. 19041.


bcook@phillynews.com

610-313-8102

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