Fulton-Randolph Market Area Is Now An Official Landmark District

The Fulton Market Cold Storage building before its makeover.

The Fulton Market Cold Storage building before its makeover.

The City of Chicago this week made it official: 142 properties in the Fulton-Randolph Market District now have landmark status.

For years, this chunk of the West Loop was home to meatpackers, food processors and warehouses. Those businesses still exist, but they now share the neighborhood with tech giant Google, rehabbed residential developments and pricey restaurants.

Landmark status now impacts the 74-acre district that include the 700 to 1000 blocks of West Randolph Street, the 100 to 300 blocks of North Sangamon Street, the 900 block of West Lake Street and the 800 to 1100 blocks of West Fulton Market Street.

Fulton Market District.

Fulton Market District.

The Commission on Chicago Landmarks recommended the designation to the City Council in May 2015. Over the past year, a number of community meetings and open houses have been held to seek input and feedback about the proposed plan from residents and businesses. The process is now final.

The most noticeable impact will be felt by developers. Building permit applications where the exteriors are affected will be reviewed by Landmarks Commission staff.

That’s because the Fulton-Randolph Market designation applies to the exterior elevations of area properties.

During the planning process, many community organizations have offered their opinions on the proposed designation. Now that landmark status is official, the West Loop Community Organization (WLCO) has weighed in with a statement:

“WLCO remains supportive of the City of Chicago’s currently proposed landmarking plan for portions of the Fulton Market, not to prevent responsible development, but to maintain the character of our community. WLCO has a long record for supporting comprehensive economic and real estate development in the West Loop. We continue to call on the City of Chicago to work collaboratively with all stakeholders – especially those in the impacted area – to ensure people’s voices and views are heard and taken into consideration.”

Author: Bill Motchan

Bill Motchan is a writer and photographer, and a former resident of the West Loop. He can be reached at bill@ChicagoArchitecture.org.

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