The city of Chicago “harbors
a cache of architectural gems that are tucked away in its neighborhoods” Blair Kamin and Patrick Readon wrote in their multi-part Tribune
series A Squandered Heritage (January 2003). If we come
to understand these structures, they provide us with a visual historical
legacy well worth treasuring and preserving. Over twenty years ago,
every building in Chicago was analyzed, inventoried, and color-coded
based on each structure's historical and architectural worth by
the Chicago Historic Resources Survey (CHRS)*.
coding (red, orange, yellow-orange, green, purple and blue) defined
a structure's level of architectural and historical significance.
The Survey, though valuable for its documentation, did not protect
even the most significant of buildings against demolition. Because
of the razing of many of these historically noted buildings , the
city in 2003 approved and issued a demolition delay ordinance to
protect red and orange-rated buildings. This ordinance provides
a 90-day temporary hold on the issuance of demolition permits. The
delay is to provide time to explore development alternatives to
demolition. To date, this ordinance has saved only a few of the
structures it was designated to help. We wish to educate and inform
our members on these historical structures within our association
boundaries. Though some of the buildings may be beyond saving, many
are worth the effort. All are worth noting.
A red property possess
an architectural feature or historical association that makes the
property potentially significant in the broader context of the city
( Chicago), the State of Illinois or the United States of America.
There are approximately 300 “red” properties identified
in the CHRS. No building was inventoried as red within LCA boundaries
by the survey.
Lincoln Central Association
is honored to harbor over 100 orange-rated buildings. An orange
rated building possesses an architectural feature or historical
association that is significant within the context of its community.
Orange rated buildings can be landmarked. An early work (1880-1889)
of Adler and Sullivan, 2310-2312 Lincoln, was listed as “orange,
but was later designated a Chicago Landmark. Yorndorf Hall
(Northeast corner of Halsted and North Avenue) is another outstanding
example of an orange-rated building within LCA boundaries that was
later designated a landmark building. Other orange-rated buildings
that have been land marked within our boundaries include the Burling
row houses in the 2200 block of Burling.
A yellow-orange building lacks individual significance but may still contribute to a city landmark district.