Prairie Court Not Yet Brought To Order In Prairie District
Jan22

Prairie Court Not Yet Brought To Order In Prairie District

We spent a good bit of time around the Prairie Avenue District over the past week or so. Once we finished gawking at the big equipment along Cermak Road, we headed back north a bit, to the intersection of Prairie Avenue and 18th Street, to see what, if anything, was happening with the new Prairie Court townhome development. It should come as no big surprise to find a rather large lot of nothing. Well, not exactly nothing. There are...

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Status Update: 18th and Prairie
Apr10

Status Update: 18th and Prairie

Demolition crews are busy massacring an old warehouse and a surface parking lot in the Prairie Avenue District, turning them in to Chicago’s newest townhome development. The project at East 18th Street and South Prairie Avenue is happening where the award-winning Lucien Lagrange-designed XO residential towers failed to take off. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Daniel Schell passed by and found heavy equipment tearing the...

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South Loop/East Pilsen to Sport Another Supermarket
Mar19

South Loop/East Pilsen to Sport Another Supermarket

With the surge in the number of people living in the South Loop and Chinatown, the number of grocery stores in the area continues to grow as well. The newest location will be 400 West 18th Street, just across the river from Chinatown’s Ping Tom Park. The new store is technically in the East Pilsen neighborhood on the east side of South Canal Street between 17th and 18th. Currently, the location is a vacant lot. An organization...

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12 Things You (Probably) Don’t Know About Thalia Hall
Aug05

12 Things You (Probably) Don’t Know About Thalia Hall

  At the corner of 18th and Allport Street in the Pilsen neighborhood, there is a large, imposing building. It was built in 1892 by a saloonkeeper named John Dusek (pronounced “DOO-sheck”). The building has changed hands many times over the past 120 years, and witnessed a significant change in the surrounding community as its demographics shifted from Bohemian to Mexican-American. The sturdy building has miraculously remained...

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Adaptive reuse goes Bohemian at Thalia Hall
Oct15

Adaptive reuse goes Bohemian at Thalia Hall

John Dušek knew a thing or two about bringing the community together. In the early 1890s, Dusek developed a grand, massive public space to do just that. The building—known as Thalia Hall—sits at 1807 South Allport Street at 18th Street in the Pilsen neighborhood. And, in a fitting tribute to the theater on the upper level, Thalia Hall is now enjoying a second act. The building was an early example of a mixed-use development. It was...

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The Glessner House: How Forward-Thinking Homeowners Helped a Revolutionary Architect Make His Mark in Chicago
Apr22

The Glessner House: How Forward-Thinking Homeowners Helped a Revolutionary Architect Make His Mark in Chicago

“It looks like an old jail,” one lady commented. “It takes courage to build a house like that,” said another. “Which church is this?” a passerby inquired. “I don’t like it and wish it was not there,” complained neighbor George Pullman, who felt himself cursed by the daily sight of the John J. Glessner House (1800 South Prairie Avenue). Amidst the Gilded Age splendor that was...

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Slice of Life: Madonna of 18th Street
Jan02

Slice of Life: Madonna of 18th Street

The merge of traditional Mexican folk images with modern street art make Pilsen a contemporary gallery. On a nondescript doorway off of 18th street, I witnessed a work of an iconic image in a new form, the Guadalupe de Pilsen. She was veiled, standing in an illuminating light, with palms together and a smile, blessing me and all who passed....

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