Pioneering architect builds his modern dream home on Detroit's far East Side

Roger Margerum has been an influential Detroit architect, having worked on projects such as Hart Plaza. Now 77, he has finally turned his design attention to himself, building a modern home set at a 45-degree angle near the Detroit River.


Darron Green, an architect at SmithGroup and the current Detroit chapter president of [National Organization of Minority Architects], said Margerum is a walking memory bank of black architectural history in Detroit.

"He's been there and done that, and we're really just trying to find out what he knows," Green said.

In a way, Margerum's new house is a reaction against not just look-alike suburban subdivisions but against some of the new rebuilding projects in inner-city Detroit.

"Houses are being replaced with the same housing styles, resulting in a new 'old' Detroit," he said. "In many of the completely abandoned areas, there's now an opportunity for a new Detroit image to reestablish neighborhoods with more distinction of a truly new Detroit."

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