Chicago Patterns: Neighborhood storytelling through photography

Saying Farewell to the CTA’s 2400-Series Railcars

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John Morris/Chicago Patterns

John Morris/Chicago Patterns

On Wednesday, January 21, the CTA bid farewell to its 2400-series railcars, its oldest set, with a ceremonial ride on what was previously known as the Ravenswood Service (Brown Line), followed by a run on the North/South route (Red/Green Line from Howard to Ashland/63rd).

Introduced in 1976, these railcars were in operation for 38 years.

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Goodbye, Gray Buildings at Milwaukee/Grand/Halsted

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Gray buildings at 500 N. Milwaukee

John Morris/Chicago Patterns

Demolition has begun on the collection of gray buildings at the intersection of Milwaukee/Grand/Halsted.

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Hyde Park’s Vista Homes: Tallest Courtyard Building in Chicago?

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Vista Homes, Hyde Park

John Morris/Chicago Patterns

Found in many Chicago neighborhoods, the courtyard building is usually overlooked as a significant part in Chicago’s development history. But during the time in which most were constructed (1900-1930), these buildings provided the less wealthy a decent living space: plentiful interior space, abundant natural lighting, and cross ventilation, which helped keep air temperature low. Cross-ventilation was particularly important as air conditioning wasn’t yet in use.

Perhaps the grandest, or at least tallest, courtyard building in the city is Vista Homes in Hyde Park.

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Driveway, Drexel Boulevard (A Merry Xmas to You)

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This week in our long overdue Flashback Friday series, we look at a holiday greeting postmarked Dec. 23, 1908 on a picture postcard of Chicago’s famed Drexel Boulevard on the South Side.

Although most, if not all, of the homes pictured above have since been demolished, the boulevard still boasts some of the city’s grandest homes.

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