Thankfully, water did not breach inside the house after last weeks flooding. The river has receded off of the formal grounds and we have reopened for limited visitation beginning Saturday, April 27. Tickets are available online at http://www.farnsworthhouse.org.
The water came within inches of the interior yesterday. We will not know for sure until the water recedes and we can get inside what damage, if any incurred. Fingers crossed.
Yesterday afternoon the Farnsworth House emergency flood disaster team assembled to raise the furniture, curtains and collections inside the interior of the Farnsworth House in anticipation of Fox River flooding. And thank goodness we did! It was a complete surprise to find the house completely surrounded by flood waters five feet above the ground and approaching the bottom of the upper deck early this morning. As of 3pm today, the flood waters have not yet breached the interior of the famed glass house by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, but the river is expected to continue rising. We are monitoring the flood water levels closely and will provide updates if conditions change. Our fingers are crossed as we wait for the receding process to begin. But as for now, the interior is safe.
Saturday’s strong winds in the Fox Valley area caused a window on the southeast corner of the Farnsworth House to shatter. As one of our site guides opened the door for first-week guests on a blustery tour day, the pressure vacuum caused by 58mph gusts left shards of plate glass in the garden below. This is an interesting tale of architecture, physics and preservation as we study what went wrong and work to repair the damage. But not to fear, the Farnsworth House is still open for tours!
Above freezing temperatures and continued rainfall has left the Fox River that runs next to the Farnsworth House in a state of rising flood waters today, March 11, 2013. The house is fully surrounded by river water, but neither the lower deck nor the upper deck has yet to be breached. We will be monitoring the flood levels over the next 48 hours and have already inacted our emergency flood procedure in the event waters reach the interior of the house. This is not expected, but our beloved house is fully prepared.
Despite our concern for the safety of the house, it sure does look pretty reflected in the lawn that has become a lake!
This little snowman has a great view!
One of Richard Neutra’s last remaining public buildings will be gone by the beginning of April, 2013. The modern structure was commissioned in 1962 to house a 377-foot panoramic painting of the battle of Gettysburg that was moved to a new visitor center in 2008. The National Park Service has been working on securing demolition of the modernist icon in efforts to restore the battlefield to its original 1863 sightlines.
Check out Architzer’s story on the demolition here: