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home : columns : columns June 24, 2016

1/2/2013 4:21:00 PM
The Truth Is ... 2
527 Judson Ave., designed by architect Ken Schroeder. RoundTable Photo
527 Judson Ave., designed by architect Ken Schroeder. RoundTable Photo

This column recently presented some of the results of an architectural survey carried out by this writer and his associate and former student David Rodeman. It covered all of Evanston’s streets, east-west and north-south. Those results described the Evanston’s several Art Deco and Prairie School homes.

The second part of the survey looked for single-family modern homes, excluding apartment buildings, townhouses and other attached types. The results revealed a surprising scarcity of modernism, listed below.

2767 Sheridan Road is way back from the road, close to the lake. A simple two-story, dark-brick volume featuring a spiral stair was designed by Lawrence Booth.

Another Booth design is nearby on the south side of Sheridan Road before Ridge. It is a two-story, beige-painted house that features a rounded stair enclosure.

1225 Asbury Ave. is a powerful, white-painted, reinforced-concrete building designed by George Shipporeit, a student of Mies van der Rohe and at one time head of IIT’s architecture program. He was also the designer of Evanston’s two office towers downtown, the white one on Grove and the black one on Davis.

1221 Michigan Ave. is a charming court house, well hidden from view, designed by another Mies student, David Haid, who was also the designer of the bank building at Central and Ridge.

1124 Sheridan Road is a slightly post-modern house designed by Thomas Hickey, at one time a partner of Ben and Cindy Weese.

642 Sheridan Square is not easy to see from the street, but is truly rewarding for those invited in. The architect is James Nagle. The adjacent totally harmonious house is by Keck and Keck.

527 Judson Ave. was designed by Ken Schroeder, a talented architect and former acting head of the UIC School of Architecture.

On the north side of Burnham Place, east of Forest and hardly visible among the trees, is a modern architectural gem by a long-time Evanston architect Ed Noonan.

Matthew Barry and Andy Spatz are the designers of 1220 Main St., an anti-contextual gem that, while it does not fit well into any existing context, is nonetheless rich in good detail and magnificent interior views.

On Eastwood Avenue the two young architects, David Hoffman and Bill Massey, designed an addition to a remodeled house creating a remarkably fitting, beautifully detailed building with equally thoughtful interiors.

The handful of houses yet to visit in the near future will, surprisingly, bring the number of modern houses in the entire City of Evanston, with a population of more than 80,000, to no more than 20.

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