A Wright sells—after more than 3 years and over $1 million in price cuts

The Glencoe home sold for $750,000 last month after being first listed for $1.9 million in 2016.

Compass

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79彩票注册网址A Glencoe house that Frank Lloyd Wright designed for his attorney and a leader in the fight for women’s suffrage in Illinois sold in late December after more than three years on the market and over $1 million in price cuts.

79彩票注册网址Originally the home of Sherman and  the Sylvan Road house on three-quarters of an acre sold Dec. 20 for $750,000.

Seller Sonia Bloch first put it on the market in June 2016, asking $1.9 million. Bloch, bought the house in 1967 with her husband, Ted, who died in 2015. Sonia Bloch died in 2018.

The asking price was cut to $880,000 in September 2019. 

79彩票注册网址Listing agent Pamela Linn of Compass did not respond to a request for comment.

Wright houses, although unquestionably an important component of Chicago’s architectural heritage, have struggled on the real estate market in recent years.

79彩票注册网址The sale of the Booth house puts it in stark figures: The 4,000-square-foot house sold for about $187.50 a square foot. Over the past two years, 14 homes in Glencoe of similar size and acreage, but in a mix of styles and ages, have sold for an average of $355 a foot, according to Crain’s analysis of recent sale records from Midwest Real Estate Data.

The buyers, not yet identified in public records, are “a young family who are Wright enthusiasts,” their agent, Joy Axelson of Axelson Realty, said in a text message. “It is such a unique property and it had been on the market so long, we were told there had been some interest from buyers wanting to tear it down. I believe the buyers will do their best to maintain the original ethos of the home.”

The kitchen and four full baths need updating, Linn said in 2016.

Completed in 1916, the three-story house stands at the edge of a wooded ravine and largely faces north over the ravine and Lake Shore Country Club. It remains largely as Wright designed it, with slatted wooden light sconces and screens between rooms, an outdoor fireplace on a rooftop deck (a rarity in Wright's designs) and even a stylized flagpole that Wright repurposed from an older building.

While waiting to move into the house, the Booths lived in a temporary cottage, also designed by Wright. The cottage, a one-story building later moved to a site around the corner on Franklin Road, is the subject of a demolition controversy since a homebuilding firm bought it in May for the land it’s on. The Chicago Tribune’s Blair Kamin reported in December that preservationists are trying to get the cottage moved to a new site, rather than demolished.

79彩票注册网址As the head of the legislative committee of the Illinois Equal Suffrage Committee, Elizabeth Booth led the group's lobbying efforts in Springfield, and after Illinois in 1913 became the first state east of the Mississippi River that gave women the right to vote, she worked with a national group to get the 19th Amendment passed in 1919.

The Booths’ permanent house was the largest of six that Wright designed for a subdivision called Ravine Bluffs, with Sherman Booth as developer and operator of some of the homes as rentals. Booth originally planned to build 30 houses. 

“It’s totally satisfying to the eye,” Sonia Bloch said in 2016 when she was putting it on the market. The house was empty at the time she and her husband bought it in the late 1960s, she said. They paid $74,000 to buy it from Northwestern University, which had received the property as a donation from the home’s second owners. The Blochs rehabbed it with an eye toward preserving all of Wright’s details, she said.

When updating, they tried to stay true to Wright. When they built a carport to replace a crumbling garage, the design incorporated details of Wright's original design for the garage. In the front hall, they replaced white tile that wasn't original with wood flooring in a pattern that Wright used in his own home and studio in Oak Park. 

This story has been update to reflect that Sonia Bloch died in 2018 and that the asking price was reduced to $880,000 after she died.

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