While touring Grand Rapids yesterday, I stumbled on a great find. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Grand Rapids, it has a wonderful historic district called Heritage Hill. It’s one of those beautiful old neighborhoods where the stately old homes have been restored and preserved rather than demolished to make room for more parking lots. It’s a great place to stroll and look at the homes, as the neighborhood has wide sidewalks and plenty of curb cuts. The Heritage Hill Association has also produced a wonderful little brochure, complete with a map of all the homes and short blurbs about the more prominent ones.
But here’s the best part — there’s a Frank Lloyd Wright home in the middle of the historic district. And although Mr. Wright didn’t exactly build most of his homes to be accessible, the Meyer May house has been altered; and thanks to that alteration the first floor is now wheelchair-accessible.
OK, technically speaking the ramp access wasn’t originally made for wheelchairs, but that doesn’t make it any less useable. I’ll take access any way I can get it. In this case, the ramp was added so delivery drivers could access the large commercial kitchen that was installed when the home was restored.
Today the home is owned by the Steelcase corporation and it’s open to the pubic for free tours on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. It’s a wonderful example of a Frank Lloyd Wright prairie style house, and definitely worth a stop while you are in the area.
Thank goodness for that commercial kitchen!!