Restoration Sought For 'House of Tomorrow'

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(photo courtesy of the Chicago History Museum) (photo courtesy of the Chicago History Museum)

Indiana Landmarks is accepting proposals to restore a house built for the 1933-34 Chicago World's Fair. The structure, known as the House of Tomorrow, currently sits in Beverly Shores as part of the Indiana Dunes National Park. It has been vacant since 1999 and needs rehabilitation that will cost up to $3 million.

The House of Tomorrow was designed by Chicago architect George Fred Keck and was meant to inspire fairgoers to want what they saw, which included floor-to-ceiling glass walls, central air conditioning, and an attached garage that opened with the push of a button, according to Indiana Landmarks.

The house became known as "America's First Glass House" and architecture critic Paul Goldberger once described it as "one of the true early monuments of American modernism, brimming over with a uniquely American idealism and earnestness about the twentieth century." The National Trust for Historic Preservation designated the House of Tomorrow as a National Treasure in 2016, making it the only place in Indiana to earn that distinction.

Indiana Landmarks worked with the National Trust to retain a team of architects and engineers, which developed plans that were approved by the National Park Service to help maintain the best features of the original 1933 design while also incorporating modern technology and conveniences to make the home livable in the next century.

The proposals being accepted by Indiana Landmarks call for the restoration and long-term lease of the House of Tomorrow for use as a single-family residence. The entity that restores the house to the approved specifications will receive a 50-year lease on the property.

You can learn more about the proposal process and see a photo of the House of Tomorrow in its current state by clicking here.

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