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Pieper Residence
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Darmok and Jalad
N 33° 32.749 W 111° 56.541
12S E 412514 N 3712196
Quick Description: First Usonian Automatic actually constructed...
Location: Arizona, United States
Date Posted: 12/20/2006 9:23:00 AM
Waymark Code: WM120A
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Rayman
Views: 243

Long Description:
Designed for an apprentice, it was the testing ground for Wright's standardized construction technique devised to address the housing shortage following World War II.

Arthur Pieper was an industrious young man who joined forces with another Wright apprentice, Charles Mantooth, to form their own construction company, Horizon Builders. While usually scornful of apprentices who were leaving the nest, Wright encouraged their efforts and convinced several of his clients to hire them. Their first customer was Benjamin Adelman, for whom Wright designed the first Usonian Automatic in nearby Phoenix. To give the young apprentices some hands on experience, Wright designed a house for Pieper and his wife Bodil.

For this early simple design, Wright specified only three types of concrete blocks-- a standard wall block, a corner block and a facia block. The corner blocks posed a problem until Bodil, a structural engineer, devised a method to cast them in place. Unlike later Usonian Automatics, which had coffered block ceilings, the roof was standard 2X4 wood framing with a ceiling of beveled Cemestos panels. The prototype also differed in another important respect-- only one thickness of blocks was used in the walls and there was no insulation. As one could easily imagine, the house became easily overheated, particularly considering that it originally had no air conditioning.

Originally, a modest 1,400 square feet, it was later drammatically enlarged to 4,500 square feet. According to Legler, the addition so overshadows the small Pieper Residence has been reduced to a wing and a passerby might easily assume that the original had been demolished.

The house is still a private residence, but is set well back from the road. It is possible to get good views from that angle. Please respect the owners privacy and do not approach the house.
Year Completed: 1952

Commissioned By: Arthur and Bodil Pieper

Nearest City or Town: Paradise Valley near Phoenix, AZ

Public/Private: Private

Tours Available?: no

Website: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
There are no specific visit requirements, however telling about your visit is strongly encouraged. Additional photos of the building or house to add to the gallery are also nice, but not required. Pictures with a GPS or you in them is highly discouraged.
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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
grandmabetsy visited Pieper Residence 4/27/2018 grandmabetsy visited it
merlot visited Pieper Residence 3/7/2014 merlot visited it
Greasepot visited Pieper Residence 1/26/2014 Greasepot visited it
kptnsky wrote comment for Pieper Residence 2/21/2009 kptnsky wrote comment for it
desert georangers visited Pieper Residence 1/25/2008 desert georangers visited it
run26.2 visited Pieper Residence 3/16/2007 run26.2 visited it
breedenhoosiers visited Pieper Residence 1/17/2007 breedenhoosiers visited it

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