Wright's Usonian High-Rises Foiled by the Great Depression

Frank Lloyd Wright's design for a Usonian high-rise on the Bowery featured rotated open floor plans to provide living space variation.

Frank Lloyd Wright is not particularly well-known for his designs of urban dwellings, let alone high-rises.

If it weren't for the Great Depression, however, three FLW-designed glass towers in New York City's East Village would jut above the uniformly low-rise blocks of the neighborhood, anchoring the historic St. Mark's Church on the Bowery today.

In keeping with Wright's Usonian vision, the towers were designed like trees, each with a central "trunk" or structural core supporting open plan concrete floor plates. A curtain wall exterior, a triangular site and the absence of other nearby tall structures allowed plenty of light to enter the buildings. Wright had planned a two-story penthouse for himself atop one of the towers.

His design was implemented in Bartlesville, OK

Full Story: Frank Lloyd Wright's 1930 Plans for Glassy East Village Towers

Comments

Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

New! 4th Edition of the Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs just released.
Starting at $24.95

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $209
DVD Cover of The Story of Sprawl

The Story of Sprawl

See how America changed shape in this collection of historic films that visually document how sprawl evolved.
$29.99 for 2-DVD SET

City Coasters

Hand-drawn engraved maps of your favorite neighborhoods are divided up across 4 coasters making each one unique.
$36.00