John Van Bergen served as an apprentice in Frank Lloyd Wright’s
studio in Oak Park, and later went on to design dozens of residential
and commercial buildings throughout Illinois and California. The
Bersbach House is considered by many historians as his best residential
commission, and is designed to take full advantage of views of Lake
Michigan from this lakeside property. The Owners were confronted
with a very difficult problem, in that they desired to enlarge the
house, without compromising views of the lake from the recently
restored Living and Dining Rooms. A strategy was therefore developed
wherein the two-bedroom/family room addition was planned as an extension
of the lower level of the house, thereby preserving lake views.
Designed with materials such as brick, stucco and cypress to complement
the existing house, the addition provides additional bedrooms for
children and guests, as well as an ideal setting for summer parties
and family gatherings. The project was completed in late 2003.