House of Tomorrow at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
West of the Cypress Log Cabin is the House of Tomorrow, creation of Chicago architect George Fred Keck. The first floor was designed as the service area, originally containing the garage and an airplane hangar. World's Fair optimists assumed every future family would own an airplane. The second and third floors were the essence of the house, containing the main living spaces and a solarium. The three-story, steel-framed building was originally clad in glass on the second and third floors. Keck defied mechanical engineers, who said that due to the expansive use of glass the house couldn't be heated, and installed a floor to ceiling "curtain wall system". Instead of heat loss during the winter, the level of solar heat gain actually reduced the need for mechanical heating. During the summer the solar gain was too great for the home's revolutionary air-conditioning system to handle, and it failed. When Robert Bartlett moved the house to Beverly Shores, he replaced the glass walls with operable windows to allow for proper air circulation.
Last updated: April 10, 2015