Chicago is as known for good architecture as its top notch comedy shows. This October 19-20, the public will get a chance to go behind the scenes at 150 of the city’s most iconic buildings for free, during Open House Chicago.
The Chicago Architecture Foundation has organized the event for its third year. The group works to celebrate established Chicago real estate and inspire individuals to foster further innovation. There are many locations to choose from, but here are some of our favorite stops:
Gold Coast – Newberry Library
Newberry Library is a favorite for the monumental curb appeal it exudes. Henry Ives Cobo designed this building in 1893 in the Romanesque-revival style. The tour will explore the Gilded Age lobby – a usually restricted collection – and the caged elevator that made an appearance in the novel Time Traveler’s Wife.
Back of the Yards – The Plant
The Plant is located in the back of the yards part of southern Chicago. This building is an icon of the city’s expansive history. While the 93,500 square foot plant used to process meat, it is now an Urban Farm with operations centered on sustainable practices, growing mushrooms and aquaponic vegetables. The tour of this facility will feature a look at those aquaponic gardens and a look into urban food production.
Rogers Park – St. Scholastica Monastery Chapel
Another great member of the city’s architectural landscape is the St. Scholastica Monastery Chapel. Built in 1906, it’s now serviced by the Benedictine Sisters of Chicago. The building’s murals are an important representation of the artist Josef Steinhage who was inspired by the Beuronese style. The tour goes through the monastery and labyrinth-inspired gardens.
Visit the Open House website for a Chicago neighborhood map that showcases the locations on this city-wide tour.