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Mid-Century Residences

Riverwoods

 

The Village of Riverwoods was established on the banks of the Des Plaines River in 1949 by local steel magnate Edward L. Ryerson. Designed to be “set in the woods without taking the trees out,” this Lake County community is home to one of the Chicagoland area’s largest concentrations of mid-century residential architecture. Over 40 homes were designed by architect Edward Humrich, who completed many residential projects in the suburbs of Chicago during the 1950s and 60s.

 
 

 

His one-story “prairie modernist” designs blend harmoniously into their surroundings. A recent wave of teardowns and “McMansion” construction has noticeably altered the Riverwoods landscape. Several Humrich houses have been obscured by large additions, while half a dozen have been demolished entirely. Most of these sites have been clear-cut of existing trees to make way for new single family houses that are out of scale with the neighboring residences. Without a local preservation ordinance in place, the character of the village may be further compromised by overdevelopment.

 

  What Can I Do? Urge Village officials to adopt a local landmarks ordinance to protect the mid-century housing character of Riverwoods. Contact Mayor William S. Kaplan, 847-945-3990 williamskaplan@comcast.net.

 

 
     

 

 

 

Landmarks Illinois
Suite 1315
53 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604 
tel. 312-922-1742 
fax 312-922-8112

 

 

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tax exempt 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1971 and is the state's leading voice for historic preservation.