News & trendsArchitecture & design

Old Town’s little house on the post-industrial prairie

by Joe Zekas on 3/12/13

One of the Chicago architecture books that I browse periodically is Jay Pridmore and George Larson’s Chicago Architecture and Design. It’s a good read, richly illustrated with Hedrich Blessing‘s always striking and often astonishing photography.

The book briefly profiles Frederick Phillips‘ Tower House in the 1300 block of Cleveland Ave in Old Town:

Raised on steel girders and cast in plate glass and corrugated metal, the four-story Tower House appears almost futuristic. The top and bottom stories are open, creating a carport and terrace. Yet the seemingly avant-garde design has touches of timeless classics. The exposed steel skeleton is Miesian; the window glazing mimics the old “Chicago window” created by William Le Baron Jenney in the 1880s; and the underfloor heating and top-floor terrace recall Frank Lloyd Wright. The building seemed instantly at home on the post-industrial prairie …

I stopped by yesterday for a brief look at the home, and was amused to a see a “prairie restoration in progress” sign on the lot immediately north of the home.

You can see more images of the award-winning Tower House at Phillips’ website.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

John March 12, 2013 at 1:20 PM

I walk by this place almost everyday and have always wondered what in the world it is.

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