Laurent House | Midwest Living

Laurent House

4646 Spring Brook Rd.
Rockford  Illinois  61114
United States
(815) 877-2952
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Midwest Living Review

Kit Bernardi
Now a museum, Laurent House is the only wheelchair-accessible home Frank Lloyd Wright ever designed.

The father of Prairie Style architecture, Frank Lloyd Wright called Rockford's Laurent House his "little gem," loving the modest ranch so much, he graced it with a rare, signed red tile embedded in the Roman brick doorway.

The solar hemicycle home design he created for wheelchair-bound World War II veteran and Rockford businessman Kenneth Laurent predates our nation's Disabilities Act by a good 40 years. Between 1949 and 1952, Wright constructed Laurent's home on 1.2 wooded acres with a design that freed his client from wheelchair restrictions. The Laurents ended up residing in the house for 60 years. The original Wright-designed furniture, lighting and signature Cherokee red coloration all have been preserved.

In June, 2014, Laurent House opens as a museum to celebrate Wright's innovative design aesthetic. Note the handicapped-accessible nuances—lower light switches, threshold-free doorways and bathroom appointments. Add the amazing red tidewater cypress cabinetry, painted screens, cantilevered fireplace, radiant heated floors, skylights and hassocks tucked under origami-shape tables, and you’ll end up with a whole new appreciation for Wright's genius. Tour reservations are required.

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