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Two of the most creative architects ever to embrace the round form, Frank Lloyd Wright and Bruce Goff, were both born on June 8—Wright in 1867, and Goff in 1904.

For Wright, the circular form symbolized freedom, an escape from the traditional residential box. As he explained in 1952, “a box is a containment. I tried to abolish the box.” Wright designed at least 14 round and semi-circular houses, as well as, most famously, the spiraling Guggenheim Museum in NYC. Not all of his round house designs were built; sadly, some of his most beautiful and innovative efforts never made it beyond the planning stage.

Wright’s 1938 project for Ralph Jester, meant for a suburban housing community in Palos Verdes, California, was his first attempt at a circular residence -

jester house plans

Another unbuilt round house was the Ludd M. Spivey house, which Wright designed during the same period.

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Developers are threatening a historic round house in Arcadia, Arizona, designed by famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright.  Built for Wright’s son David in 1950-1952, the house is made of curved concrete blocks, and is accessed via a spiral ramp reminiscent of NYC’s Guggenheim Museum -

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8081 Meridian, a development company that builds “Highly Livable Luxury Homes,” bought the property in early 2012 for $1.8 million. The company has filed plans with the city to divide the 2-acre property, a possible first step toward demolition.  In an interview with the Arizona Republic, managing partner John Hoffman reportedly said that “it’s not a given that the house can be preserved.”

After negotiations with the city and the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, Hoffman said in mid-July that his company has put its plans on hold for 60 days while seeking a compromise solution to save the house. The waiting period ends on August 21.

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