The scaffolding is down at the Bakers Shoes Building (133 South State Street). You’ll remember this was the store that the Chicago Tribune described as a “late 1940’s retail gem” before having a conniption fit in February, 2011 about its then-impending renovation.
While the old Bakers Shoes was a great piece of history, it was not preserved as such. If it was kept in pristine condition, people might have appreciated it. But the fact of the matter is that it was another dark, grundy, dirty storefront that didn’t fit into State Street’s increasingly squeaky clean image. Whether the owners should have cleaned it up instead of ripping it to shreds is a discussion I’ll let academics and newspaper reporters have. I’m just glad to see progress being made toward finishing the project.
- Originally opened November 26, 1948 as a Chandler’s Shoes store.
- Designed by Holabird, Root & Burgee
- Going to be two stores instead of one when it’s done.
If anyone is willing to fly a flag for the poor bastard of a building next door at 127, I’m all in.