• Architecture,  Featured,  Form,  Print Edition,  Residential,  Spotlight

    Building a snapshot

    A Traverse City-based contracting and construction firm strives to frame each home by capturing the hidden treasures in each client’s lifestyle. “I have always had a drive for building things: building tree forts or building bridges through swamps,” said Dean Adams, owner of Bay Area Contracting, Inc. and BAC Design Group. “I was always so intrigued about it.” While Adams’ family may have had an affinity for the medical field as a profession, he decided to go against the grain to pursue a career in the building industry. With humble beginnings as a “grunt worker,” Adams worked his way through the field as he served as a framer, foreman, and project manager before deciding to establish his own…

  • Featured,  Travel

    Public space, reimagined

    In recent years, there has been a growing initiative in urban landscapes to look beyond the imminent tomorrow and reimagine the next generation of public spaces. It is a movement encouraging cities, architects, designers, and urban planners to reclaim underutilized infrastructure and transform it into hybrid spaces of both city and greenspace: parks that also serve as public squares, gardens, transit corridors, and living, moving performance art. For several public-private partners in Toronto, Ontario, the Frederick G. Gardiner Expressway connecting the downtown city to its surrounding neighborhoods presented the perfect opportunity to posit a new take on the cultural destination and city park. The Gardiner Expressway, which carries thousands of…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured,  Travel

    Building Harley-Davidson

    For more than a century, the Harley-Davidson Motor Cycle Company, a subsidiary of Harley-Davidson Inc., has been an icon of American motorcycle design, both classic and innovative, with the company’s upcoming—and long-awaited—release of its first electric motorcycle, the LiveWire, being no exception. Harley-Davidson is also known as one of the only American motorcycle manufacturers still in existence from the industry’s formative decades, and the company’s current headquarters on Juneau Avenue in Milwaukee is a testament to its longevity.  Construction on today’s iteration of the Juneau Avenue complex—originally the company’s factory—began in 1910, the same year Harley-Davison’s iconic bar and shield logo was first used. Recently, flat files containing a collection…

  • Featured,  Print Edition

    Great Lakes By Design: In Scene

    Contents: Design Corner Thea 
the artistic and minimalist table designed by Versteel in collaboration with Roberto Lucci Epoxy tables 
a series of custom coffee tables from repurposed, fallen beech and oak trees Design Spotlight Behind the camera 
in conversation about craft with some of the photographers in the region Julia Auerbach Photography Ashley Avila Photography M-Buck Studio Form Beautifully designed 
a Chicago-based interior designer who has paired artistic craft with business acumen as an entrepreneur with a deft eye for interior architecture The museum school 
a former museum site in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan is transformed into an innovative public school concept The beachfront aerie 
a renovation of a waterfront cottage into an open and…

  • Featured,  Form,  Travel

    Idyllic island retreat

    Within its approximately eight-mile circumference—contained by the limestone bluffs of Lake Huron—Mackinac Island holds a bounty of original and inspired Victorian-era architecture. The historic state park is as famous for its architectural details as its primary methods of transportation—bike, horse, and buggy—and each building on the island maintains characteristics of the era’s many popular stylistic movements, from the shingle and French rustic styles, to Queen Anne and colonial revivals.  Just under a decade ago, the architectural team at Shoreline Architecture & Design, Inc. in Petoskey, Michigan crafted an island residence inspired by its distinctive Queen Anne and shingle-style surroundings. More recently, the homeowners tapped the team for a new home…

  • Architecture,  Featured,  Form,  Print Edition,  Residential,  Spotlight

    Rich welcome at Cass Lake

    Set on a waterfront peninsula, this Cass Lake residence is a warm and artful interpretation of a contemporary seaside villa. There is a careful courtship as one moves from the limestone-and-iron front gate featuring a custom design by an artisan in the Middle East, to the circular drive before the grand entrance, where lush, tropical greenery, cement tile roof, glass, and a warm, textural stone exterior greet the viewer in V-shaped layout.  At a glance, it is defined by its more than 1,000 feet of lake-frontage, low-sloped rooflines, unique massing and rounded corners, and an exterior of Minnesota-sourced Vetter stone and commercial-grade, aluminum-sash, bronze-tinted glass windows and doors. Its distinctive…

  • Creative Endeavors

    Modern polish

    In Hudsonville, Michigan, the specialty proto-design shop at Banyan Tree Fabworks is known for creating custom furnishings out of unique historic machinery and vintage artifacts. From steel tables and wine racks supported by massive industrial gears, to woodworking jointers fashioned into sleek, modern desks; the firm’s entire portfolio represents the experimental nature of repurposing some of the 20th century’s most hard-working artifacts. To date, however, one of its prized works of experimental design success is a rounded bar made from a preserved 1955 Cadillac Series 62 sedan. “I think what makes this [project] unique is we really pushed the boundaries of what our capabilities are,” said Greg Davis, vice president…

  • Creative Endeavors

    Detroit Month of Design

    In 2015, Detroit was designated the first—and only—UNESCO City of Design in the United States. Since then, Design Core Detroit, the driving organization behind its designation, has been consistently developing efforts to nurture an even more vibrant and inclusive national and global design capital. Last year, the organization launched its Detroit City of Design Action Plan, which aims to position Detroit as a global leader in the practice of inclusive design. To honor the city’s designation as a UNESCO City of Design, the organization also transformed the annual, five-day, Detroit Design Festival into a month-long celebration of creativity for September 2019, deemed the Detroit Month of Design, or MoD. MoD…

  • Creative Endeavors

    Film, developing

    David Alexander, a Chicago-based freelance-one-stop-shop filmmaker and videographer, has a background in everything from architecture and music videos to documentaries. Alexander has captured numerous high-income residential properties in the Windy City, including spaces like Lake Point Tower—a high-rise that houses condominiums overlooking Navy Pier and the rest of the cityscape—among others. It was about 10 years ago when Alexander was working as a car salesman, part of an industrial rock band, and renting out rooms in his house, when his passion for filmmaking sparked when a tenant-and-friend happened to show him a college project. “I was doing fine at Mercedes for six years, but I was desperate to get out…