Flooded Michigan city is mid-century architecture mecca

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Craig McDonald, director of the Alden B. Dow Home & Studio, talks Wednesday, May 27, about the flooding that inundated many midcentury modern buildings in Midland, Michigan.Dow was an architect who introduced modernism to Midland, and now the city has more than 400 documented midcentury structures. Many now worry about how extensive the damage is, though Dow’s home and studio escaped damage. (AP Photo/Tammy Webber)

MIDLAND, Mich. (AP) — The central Michigan city of Midland has more than 400 mid-century modern homes and other buildings, making it a mecca for enthusiasts of the architectural style that favors clean lines, repeating patterns and spaces connected to the outdoors.

Charles Mikkelsen, left, his son Stewart Mikkelson and wife, Linda Mikkelsen take a break from cleaning up their 1966 midcentury modern home in Midland, Michigan, on Wednesday, May 27, 2020. Charles and Linda Mikkelsen moved to Midland from Dallas last November specifically because of the Central Michigan city’s extensive midcentury architecture. Midcentury enthusiasts worry how many of the structures were damaged after torrential rains overwhelmed two dams and submerged much of the city. (AP Photo/Tammy Webber)

Now, though, many are worried about the damage to the city’s distinctive buildings caused by flooding after dams were breached.

On Wednesday, May 27, 2020, Christopher Jue shows how high water reached in his 1958 midcentury modern home, designed by noted architect Alden B.Dow, after torrential rains overwhelmed two dams and submerged much of Midland, Michigan. The Central Michigan city is known for its hundreds of midcentury modern structures, and architecture enthusiasts worry how many were damaged. (AP Photo/Tammy Webber)

Craig McDonald is the director of the Alden B. Dow Home and Studio, named for the architect who introduced modernism to Midland.

Piles of household debris line Valley Drive in Midland, Michigan, on Wednesday, May 27, 2020. The Central Michigan city, known for its midcentury modern architecture, was submerged after torrential rains overwhelmed two dams. Architecture enthusiasts worry how extensively the structures were damaged. (AP Photo/Tammy Webber)

He says some mid-century homes and other buildings were significantly damaged, but it’s too soon to know if any were destroyed.

Craig McDonald, director of the Alden B. Dow Home & Studio, talks Wednesday, May 27, about the flooding that inundated many midcentury modern buildings in Midland, Michigan.Dow was an architect who introduced modernism to Midland, and now the city has more than 400 documented midcentury structures. Many now worry about how extensive the damage is, though Dow’s home and studio escaped damage. (AP Photo/Tammy Webber)

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