Beautiful 19th Century Homes on Borrowed Time

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Gingerbread Gothic home at 1944 N Sedgwick will likely be destroyed [John Morris/Chicago Patterns]

In Chicago, as it is nationwide, demand for housing is outstripping supply. Speculators and wealthy individuals are eagerly rushing in to meet the top-end demand, leaving a trail of destroyed historic housing stock in their wake. Meanwhile, the supply of low and mid-range housing stock remains largely unaddressed.

This is often evident in real estate listing descriptions that say “the value is in the land,” for properties that exceed a million dollars with the implicit understanding that the home will be razed and replaced. This is playing out heavily in North Side neighborhoods like Lake View and Lincoln Park, where blocks of mostly new construction mega-mansions dot the landscape.

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Paulina and Pierce

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An artifact of the raising of Chicago streets, at a circa 1884 Workers Cottage at Paulina and Pierce.


Blue and Green

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[John Morris/Chicago Patterns]

Lots of blue and green around this 1890s store and flats building at Halsted and 31st in Bridgeport.


Hints of a Taller Past

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506 W. 26th [John Morris/Chicago Patterns]

At 506 W. 26th St. is a residential building with a small clue of a once taller past.

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