It’s official. Saint Dominic’s Church is going condo.
The church at 357 West Locust Street served the gritty heart of a gritty Chicago at its grittiest point in history. It fed, clothed, and nurtured the city’s poorest in an era before municipal social services in a slum so wretched it was called “Little Hell.”
Little Hell eventually shed that name and became Cabrini Green. Now real estate developers are trying to erase the Cabrini name as well. The church is just the latest victim of the modern-day rebirth and whitewashing of the neighborhood.
The new condo building that will replace the church was designed by Sullivan Goulette & Wilson Architects and will rise 74 feet tall — not too much taller than Saint Dominic’s twin Italian bell towers. The residential building will have 45 condominiums with 51 indoor parking spaces.
Sadly, in the end there was no one to speak in defense of the church. Twenty-five years after the Archdiocese of Chicago closed the doors to parishioners, Chicago Architecture Blog reporter Daniel Schell saw just two people at the mic at the Chicago Plan Commission meeting. Both of them were complaining about the condo building’s parking structure. The Plan Commission swiftly passed the developer’s redevelopment plan.
For more information on the history of Saint Dominick’s see Wendy Bright’s article from last autumn: One Last Look at Saint Dominic’s Church.