February 25, 2021
Yesterday, February 24, 2021, Preservation Chicago published its list of the seven most endangered places, which includes the eastern edge of the Central Manufacturing District, the nation’s first planned industrial district.
The CMD was the manufacturing engine responsible for much of Chicago’s tremendous growth in the 20th Century and was the home of companies like Wrigley, Ford, Westinghouse, Rexall, Pullman, as well as hundreds of other manufacturing and industrial businesses.
In addition, the CMD was Epstein's original home, as our firm was their on-call architect and engineer from our founding in 1921 through to the early 60s. In that time, we designed hundreds of buildings in the district, including a number of projects highlighted by Preservation Chicago as being endangered of being demolished.
Image below: One of the projects highlighted as being endangered: Columbia Pipe & Supply - 1120 W. Pershing
To get a greater sense of how much work Epstein did in the CMD, the following is a graphic "map" that we put together showing all the projects we had in design or construction in 1951 alone.
The purpose of Preservation Chicago’s list is not only to raise awareness, but also to call for the City to designate the district a landmark and protect the architectural significant structures throughout.