Established in 2017, the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail takes visitors to nine Wright-designed buildings across southern Wisconsin, all open to the public. The trail is a partnership of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, and is marked by specially designed signage.
Born in Wisconsin's Driftless Region, Wright (1867-1959) spent his boyhood summers working his uncle's farm in Spring Green and eventually built his famous home and studio a mile away. He is widely regarded as America's greatest architect and the originator of organic architecture, which focuses on harmonizing design with nature and people.
The Frank Lloyd Wright Trail runs through Racine County on a 200-mile, self-guided architectural adventure.
Wright in Racine
In Racine County, visitors may tour the SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower at 1525 Howe Street in Racine. Tours are free, but reservations are required.
The SC Johnson Administration Building, the household products manufacturer's global headquarters, was completed in 1939. It features The Great Workroom, a large open space supported by a series of unique, concrete columns. The Research Tower, which opened in 1950, is constructed on the cantilever principle off a center core. Its outer walls are alternating bands of brickwork and glass tubing.
The 90-minute tours of the SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower include the Foster + Partners-designed Fortaleza Hall that houses the SC Johnson Gallery: At Home With Frank Lloyd Wright and the Lily Pad gift shop featuring SC Johnson memorabilia and Wright-inspired merchandise. The tour begins at the Golden Rondelle Theater, which served as the Johnson Pavilion at the 1964-1965 New York World's Fair, and ends at Waxbird Commons, a state-of-the-art facility that opened in 2021.
At the Golden Rondelle Theater, the documentary film "Carnauba: A Son's Memoir" is shown Sundays at 1 p.m. and the Academy Award-winning film "To Be Alive!" is shown Saturdays at 1:30 p.m. Tour and film reservations are required.
Wright in Wind Point
In northern Racine County, visitors may tour Wingspread at 33 E 4 Mile Road in Wind Point. One of the largest Wright-designed private homes at 14,000 square feet, Wingspread was designed for H.F. Johnson and family. Located on a 36-acre wooded tract, it is now an international retreat and executive conference facility operated by the Johnson Foundation of Wingspread. The tour highlights remarkable features such as the home's disappearing dining table, its teepee-inspired clerestory ceiling in the great room, and the cantilevered "Romeo and Juliet" balcony bedroom. The one-hour tour is free, but reservations are required.
Other FLW Trail Stops
You're invited to continue on the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail to these other architecturally significant sites:
Visit the Wisconsin Department of Tourism website for more information on the Frank Lloyd Wright Trail.