EDSEL AND ELEANOR FORD HOUSE

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Location
Grosse Pointe Shores, MI
Original Construction
1926-29
Completion Date
On going
Size
20,000 sf

National Register of Historic Places

The Edsel and Eleanor Ford House, which is named “Gaukler Point” is on the shore of Lake St. Clair in Grosse Pointe Shores, northeast of Detroit, Michigan. It became the new residence of the Edsel and Eleanor Ford family in 1929.  Edsel Ford was the son of Henry and Clara Ford and an executive at Ford Motor Company. The estate’s buildings were designed by architect Albert Kahn, its site plan and gardens by renowned landscape designer Jens Jensen. 

The 60+ room mansion was inspired by the vernacular architecture of the English cotswold cottages and villages.  Kahn’s design included sandstone exterior walls, a traditional slate roof with the stone shingles decreasing in size as they reach its peak.  Interior fittings were in the hands of Charles Roberson, an expert in adapting old European paneling and fittings to American interiors as many elements and fittings were repurposed from English Estates that were being dismantled.  

In 2012, HopkinsBurns with consultant JJR, embarked on the development of a master plan for the buildings and site to direct short and long term decision making.  The master plan celebrates the legacy of the Ford Familty story while inspiring a sense of inquiry and reflection with respect for the natural and built elements of the Ford House Estate.  The master plan provides a step by step road map which focuses on implementation, providing benchmarks for measuring the sucess of the project and a future image/vision of how the Ford Estate will function and what it will look like after implementation of the plan.