Miletus Group has officially announced the opening of its new office in Chicago, IL at 2823 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Suite E, (312) 265-6447. The new Chicago metropolitan location will house architectural services, building on the continued success of the Miletus Group management, design, and production operations in its Rochester, IN headquarters.
“The new design office gives us a great new platform to reach out to the entire Chicago metropolitan market,” says James B. Guthrie, AIA, president of Miletus Group, adding, “We have exciting plans for innovative, large-scale modular solutions involving hotel, apartment, and healthcare facility projects,” he further explains. “Chicago is a natural market for substantial building in these sectors, making it a perfect fit for our future growth strategy. In addition, Chicago is my hometown, so I very much look forward to working there with our staff of talented architects.”
Chicago was selected as a key growth market, according to Guthrie, because of its proximity to the company’s production facility in Indiana, and because it provides a large market area with a history of progressive thinking in terms of architecture and building. Guthrie points out that early in the twentieth century, Chicago-founded Sears, Roebuck and Co. sold over 70,000 precut and prepackaged homes through their mail order Modern Homes program, which allowed customers to choose a house to suit their individual tastes and budgets. At approximately the same time, he goes on to explain, Frank Lloyd Wright introduced his textile block Usonian home concept to demonstrate that exceptional quality and design, using prefabricated components, can be made available to the masses.
“Conceptually, we stand on the shoulders of such Chicago icons as Sears and Frank Lloyd Wright, who paved the way for modular architecture,” Guthrie states. “Today, we are seeing a resurgence in modular architecture,” he continues. “The interest is driven in small part by economics, but more so by a desire for greener construction practices, creative design, and the caliber of high quality production that Miletus Group consistently delivers and will now extend into the Chicago market.”
At Miletus Group, we like to say, “just like LEGOs only bigger” when we try to describe modular building to people who aren’t familiar with it. How appropriate then that LEGO has selected two architects to feature in their Architect series – Mies van der Rohe and Frank Lloyd Wright – who both embraced their modern methods of construction and made them into enviable art forms. (For more see our recent blog post, Mies vs. Modular.)
Mies van der Rohe’s modernist masterpiece Farnsworth House joined the LEGO Architecture product line about a month ago. The Architecture line also includes Wright’s Guggenheim Museum and Fallingwater.
LEGO Architecture is a collaboration between the LEGO Group and Chicago architect Adam Reed Tucker. It started as a pilot of 200 boxes in 2007. In 2010, international distribution started through LEGO online stores, brand retail stores and in a growing number of outlets around the world.
The actual Farnsworth House is located in Plano, Illinois, just outside Chicago. It was designed and constructed between 1945 and 1951 as a one-room weekend retreat for Dr. Edith Farnsworth, a prominent Chicago physician. Today, the house is a pilgrimage site for architects and designers worldwide, owned and operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in the U.S. The historic site is open to the public. We recommend a visit to this outstanding piece of architecture.
Mies van der Rohe is the second architect to be featured after Frank Lloyd Wright in Lego’s ‘Architect’ series.
Like our friend Architect Barbie, (see our recent post on Barbie for more), LEGOS and other interactive toys bring the importance of design home and encourage boys and girls to dream about and participate in building a brighter future. Using modular blocks like LEGOs also fuels a child’s imagination, just as imaginative minds in architecture today are fueled by the possibilities of modular construction methods.
© Miletus Group, Inc. 2011