Skip to main content

Project

Davenport House

Thornton Tomasetti provided structural renewal and historic preservation services to help evaluation restore this historical house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Lead Contact

Project Details

Project Partners
Harding Partners
Location
Oak Park, Illinois
Completion Date
Davenport House in Oak Park, Illinois. Thornton Tomasetti
Davenport House in Oak Park, Illinois. Thornton Tomasetti
Davenport House in Oak Park, Illinois. Thornton Tomasetti
Davenport House in Oak Park, Illinois. Thornton Tomasetti
The original Davenport House in Oak Park, Illinois. Courtesy Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation

Overview

Built in 1901 and designed by renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright, the two-story Davenport House is considered the Chicago area’s first example of Prairie Style architecture. Thornton Tomasetti provided structural renewal and historic preservation services to Harding Partners to help restore this historical house to its original condition.

Highlights

  • To repair the sagging floor joists at the second floor, we designed and implemented a jacking procedure to gradually raise the floor in small, ¼-inch increments every five days over a several week period.
  • The procedure required the removal and replacement of the first floor plaster ceiling and faux beams and the diagonal bracing between the existing joints.
  • In addition to the joist jacking, we designed the installation of new joists to reinforce the existing ones. Installing the new joists proved a challenge as the jacking system did not allow enough space for their addition.
  • Therefore, the new joists were installed and temporarily secured prior to the jacking procedure and permanently installed after the floor was leveled.
  • We also restored the lower cantilevered roof eaves to their original configuration, reinforced the roof framing to support a new hanging furnace and analyzed the second-story framing to ensure support for a new cast iron bathtub.