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Foulke You
01-03-2002, 06:47 PM
Driving past Comiskey today on the Dan Ryan I noticed they are making progress on bringing down the Robert Taylor Homes. They've started on the 2 grey buildings on the far right behind Comiskey. One of them is already half gone and the other one has demo equipment around it. The 2 most prominent buildings in Comiskey's background still remain untouched but they should be gone soon. Smart money is that they will definitely all be gone before the all-star game in 2003 or who knows maybe this year?

:reinsy

I have grand plans for that land...Oh! There I go thinking aloud again!

nut_stock
01-03-2002, 06:51 PM
Well, after the projects are gone as well as the top of the upperdeck, people will have to create new excuses for not coming to the games.

Seriously though, I think its great that they are being demolished, and paving the way for continued Urban Re-development on the Southside. Now the question is "What will take their place?"

Daver
01-03-2002, 07:14 PM
Originally posted by nut_stock
Well, after the projects are gone as well as the top of the upperdeck, people will have to create new excuses for not coming to the games.

Seriously though, I think its great that they are being demolished, and paving the way for continued Urban Re-development on the Southside. Now the question is "What will take their place?"

If the trend in the south loop continues it will be townhomes and and midrange condos.You can see signs of this as close as 31st and State.

nut_stock
01-03-2002, 10:34 PM
How about they build a mall on the site, so Comiskey really is a BALLMALL.

Soxboyrob
01-04-2002, 08:43 AM
Originally posted by nut_stock

Seriously though, I think its great that they are being demolished, and paving the way for continued Urban Re-development on the Southside. Now the question is "What will take their place?"

There was talk for a while and I don't know if it's still an issue but IKEA was looking to put a store right there on the other side of the Ryan and just south of 35th Street. Anyone else heard about any of this?

cheeses_h_rice
01-04-2002, 09:55 AM
Originally posted by Soxboyrob


There was talk for a while and I don't know if it's still an issue but IKEA was looking to put a store right there on the other side of the Ryan and just south of 35th Street. Anyone else heard about any of this?

I heard Richie D. shot that idea down due to traffic concerns.

FarmerAndy
01-04-2002, 10:30 AM
If you ask me, strip malls and superstores are as ugly as housing projects. I can already see visions of the new back drop behind Comiskey, they read: BEST BUY, WAL MART, and BARNES & NOBLE.

bjmarte
01-04-2002, 01:20 PM
Originally posted by FarmerAndy
If you ask me, strip malls and superstores are as ugly as housing projects. I can already see visions of the new back drop behind Comiskey, they read: BEST BUY, WAL MART, and BARNES & NOBLE.
I agree completely. In fact I would much rather deal with the charred remains of a crack addict's apartment than a place where people want to go to shop. God forbid any econmic development take place to revitalize that part of the city.

rdivaldi
01-04-2002, 01:31 PM
Music to my ears...

From the CHA website:

Chicagoís State Street Corridor, a four-mile stretch of public housing, contains the nationís largest and most densely populated continuous stretch of isolated high-rise public housing. Robert Taylor - B will be the site of significant redevelopment through the demolition, ultimately, of sixteen dilapidated high-rise buildings unsuitable for family living, construction or acquisition of low-density housing on-site and off-site, and the development of badly needed commercial and industrial facilities.

FarmerAndy
01-04-2002, 02:18 PM
Originally posted by bjmarte

I agree completely. In fact I would much rather deal with the charred remains of a crack addict's apartment than a place where people want to go to shop. God forbid any econmic development take place to revitalize that part of the city.

Nice use of sarcasm, but I wasn't trying to imply that I enjoy the sight of crackhouses. I too am for economic development and South Side revitalization. (In fact, it should have started in 1990, along with the Sox building a retro-park north of old Comiskey. That's another topic though.) I didn't make my point very clear, but I would rather see the growth of local business. More parks. Alive streets with storefronts on both sides. The idea of gigantic superstores crammed into stripmalls with huge parking lots doesn't seem to make the neighborhood nicer. It just turns it into a crowded cluster****. Comiskey itself is sterile enough, I just don't like the idea of sterilizing the entire nieghborhood around it.
It would be nice to have a cool nieghborhood around Comiskey. If the start building malls around it, we might get confused and not know which mall is the ballpark.

Foulke You
01-04-2002, 02:33 PM
Just the subtraction of the Robert Taylor Homes will do wonders for that neighborhood. No matter what they put there. The projects stood for years as a symbol of urban decay on the South Side and also gave the area the stigma of being a bad neighborhood. Whatever they end up putting up, it will do wonders for th South Side community and the White Sox will greatly benefit from an improved area as well. Look what Giuliani did cleaning up Times Square. If Daley could do half of that for his home South Side neighborhood than it will be great.

Kilroy
01-04-2002, 02:37 PM
Originally posted by Foulke You
Just the subtraction of the Robert Taylor Homes will do wonders for that neighborhood. No matter what they put there. The projects stood for years as a symbol of urban decay on the South Side and also gave the area the stigma of being a bad neighborhood. Whatever they end up putting up, it will do wonders for th South Side community and the White Sox will greatly benefit from an improved area as well. Look what Giuliani did cleaning up Times Square. If Daley could do half of that for his home South Side neighborhood than it will be great.

Well then they also need to get after the low-rise bldgs just to the south of the park on the west side of the Ryan. That area is a real eyesore. Clean that up too and they'd really be doing something.

duke of dorwood
01-04-2002, 03:45 PM
Right-more residences, occupied by people that dont maintain them is not the answer. Some industry on that stretch of State would be nice. But in this economy, that is not logical.

:reinsy

Live long, and prosper

CLR01
01-04-2002, 04:02 PM
Originally posted by Soxboyrob


There was talk for a while and I don't know if it's still an issue but IKEA was looking to put a store right there on the other side of the Ryan and just south of 35th Street. Anyone else heard about any of this?


oh yes, a huge blue IKEA superstore would be an awesome sight when looking out over the left field bleachers. I could just see it now, those jags would change their building color from blue and yellow to blue and red, because it woud be cuter. Whats taking so long to knock the RTH's down? Are they doing it with a wrecking ball? They should just take some explosives to it and get it over with.

PaleHoseGeorge
01-04-2002, 04:11 PM
Originally posted by cheeses_h_rice
I heard Richie D. shot that idea down due to traffic concerns.

I thought the city vetoed IKEA's plans for building a store near the Kennedy on the North Side. Didn't they offer a Near South Side location as an alternative?

There are several big-box retailers (like Home Depot and Wal-Mart) planning to move into the Roosevelt/Canal area just east of UIC. That stretch, south to Cermak, is where the retailers ought to go.

Leave the neighborhood around IIT and Comiskey Park for residential development. Gentrification is heading straight in that direction. The city needs to get real choosy about who gets to develop what from this prime real estate.

Daver
01-04-2002, 04:12 PM
Originally posted by CLR01

Whats taking so long to knock the RTH's down? Are they doing it with a wrecking ball? They should just take some explosives to it and get it over with.

The City of Chicago frowns on using explosives in building demolition,it takes jobs away from union demolition contractors.

Foulke You
01-04-2002, 04:29 PM
To answer CLR01s question about how they are destroying the buildings and why it's taking so long. As someone who drives the Dan Ryan just about everyday, I've noticed that they started on the high rises further southeast first (Around 71st st.) and are slowly making their way up to Comiskey. As I mentioned they've finally started demolishing the 2 on the right side of Comiskey's backdrop. They are using an odd way of destroying them which is why it's taking so damn long. They put their bulldozers and wrecking equipment on the roof and just hack away at it, layer by layer until it is gone. I've seen them do it. They seem to destroy a layer or 2 every day. Why they don't use dynamite or the wrecking ball is beyond me. Perhaps the ground around the buildings isn't stable enough, I don't know. There also doesn't seem to be a method to which building they hack down first because I've seen them knock down 1 or 2 around 71st st., skip 2, and move on to the next one about 20 blocks away. So, in theory, they could start on the ones immediately behind Comiskey in a 1 month or 1 year, depending on which hi-rises they decide are going to go first.

cheeses_h_rice
01-04-2002, 04:33 PM
Originally posted by PaleHoseGeorge


I thought the city vetoed IKEA's plans for building a store near the Kennedy on the North Side. Didn't they offer a Near South Side location as an alternative?

Actually, you are correct, sir:

http://www.suntimes.com/output/business/ikea05.html

The North Side location was shot down due to traffic concerns, but this article says that the City has offered a selection of sites along either the Dan Ryan, Stevenson, or Eisenhower expressways. One of the sites is at 35th & the Ryan.

PaleHoseGeorge
01-04-2002, 04:40 PM
Originally posted by daver
The City of Chicago frowns on using explosives in building demolition,it takes jobs away from union demolition contractors.

I'm sure that's part of their thinking. The other part has to do with creating sensational and embarrassing images of public housing building imploding on themselves. It was bad public policy that created these monstrosities in the first place.

One of the leading politicians to create the CHA highrises was the mayor's father. The last thing Richie wants is all the network newscasts (plus CNN, FNC, and all the rest on cable TV) showing the notorious RTH being blown up--over and over and over again. It gives the city (and the mayor) a black eye.

It's much better to tear them down slowly. The TV networks won't bother covering the story because there won't be any sensationalistic images for their audience to care about, their attention spans no longer than the time needed to take the average whiz during a commercial break.

Who else remembers the public housing highrises getting imploded along the riverfront in St. Louis? That happened nearly 40 years ago (to make room for the Gateway Arch). If the city had used a simple wrecking ball, nobody would have ever cared, and St. Louis would have been spared the "dying city" image it got knocked with for years afterwards.

Foulke You
01-04-2002, 06:45 PM
Good point PHG. I didn't even think of the whole "ruining the legacy of the former Mayor Daley" angle. It could be that this is why they choose to slowly tear them down and at different points throughout the city rather than just buzzsawing through them from one end to the other. Although it may be too late to avoid bad press. The Chicago Sun-Times did a continuing feature during the summer on all of the project buildings that are coming down and what they are going to do with all of the people who lived in them. Of course, that imagery certainly can't compare to a dozen hi-rises being blown to kingdom come on the 6 o'clock news.

RedPinStripes
01-04-2002, 06:53 PM
Originally posted by Kilroy


Well then they also need to get after the low-rise bldgs just to the south of the park on the west side of the Ryan. That area is a real eyesore. Clean that up too and they'd really be doing something.

I agree. They need a bull dozer to start leveling all those low rises behind the scoreboard. 37th and Princton is not an eye catcher.

Nellsin
01-04-2002, 09:52 PM
Pruitt-Igoe, I think it was, in St. Louis, at least that's the explosion I remember seeing many times on TV. A famous image indeed, though it was too recent (early 70s) to be the site of the Arch so maybe that's another one?

The slow-go demo is used not only on public buidlings, but private as well in Chicago. It's very rare to see any building blown up here, even where the owners would prefer it and have no publicity issues. It has happened, but not often.

Big-box surrounded by a sea of parking lot is becoming less common, at least close in. There's just not enough room if you want the desirable mix of uses that posters have been talking about in this thread. The Dominick's at Roosevelt & Canal, built several years ago on the huge site of the demolished SOO Line terminal, is enormous with a suburban-style lot and adjoining strip mall. Pretty it may not be, but the space was there and the stores were needed and are heavily used.

The much newer Jewel-Osco at Roosevelt & Wabash was squeezed onto a (comparativley) small lot bisected by the El. It has two stories (the booze is upstairs, for some reason), a relatively small footprint and separate little-box stores (dry cleaner etc.) abutting the sidewalk on each outer corner of the parking lot, so you don't see a mall look as you approach. And the El helps visually too to integrate it into the cityscape. It's pretty cool. It gives me some hope that they will handle the land near Comiskey reasonably well. I'd love to see the area looking better for 2003.

PaleHoseGeorge
01-05-2002, 05:11 AM
Originally posted by Nellsin
Big-box surrounded by a sea of parking lot is becoming less common, at least close in. There's just not enough room if you want the desirable mix of uses that posters have been talking about in this thread. The Dominick's at Roosevelt & Canal, built several years ago on the huge site of the demolished SOO Line terminal, is enormous with a suburban-style lot and adjoining strip mall. Pretty it may not be, but the space was there and the stores were needed and are heavily used.

The much newer Jewel-Osco at Roosevelt & Wabash was squeezed onto a (comparativley) small lot bisected by the El. It has two stories (the booze is upstairs, for some reason), a relatively small footprint and separate little-box stores (dry cleaner etc.) abutting the sidewalk on each outer corner of the parking lot, so you don't see a mall look as you approach. And the El helps visually too to integrate it into the cityscape. It's pretty cool. It gives me some hope that they will handle the land near Comiskey reasonably well. I'd love to see the area looking better for 2003.

Do you live near there, Nellsin? I owned a condo in the highrise at 899 S. Plymouth Court for five years in the early-90's. The cops from the old police headquarters (11th & State) would hang out at the White Hen Pantry inside the ground floor of our building, eating donuts. Safest building in the neighborhood. :smile:

Back then, things were still very rough. The Printer's Row/Dearborn Park redevelopment was nearly 20 years old and growth was still painfully slow. Bucktown, Westgate, and another half-dozen neighborhoods on the north and northwest side were exploding. Meanwhile, we couldn't even get a damned grocery store built.

There was nothing south of Roosevelt Road. I was taking my life in my hands just to walk to and from the Firestone dealer at 16th & Wabash to get my car's oil changed. The Soo Line freight warehouse had been converted to a flea market, the only businesses thriving along Wabash were SRO hotels, and once a year, the neighborhood was invaded by Dead Heads camping out for the group's Soldier Field concerts. Frankly, they represented an upgrade on street life. :cool:

I'll never forget a mentally-unstable homeless man pitching his sleeping bag "tent" on the sidewalk across the street from our building at 9th and State (winter, 1993). It was covered in a hundred or so hand-drawn swastikas. He was there for 3 days before the cops came and got him.

All that **** changed when Daley moved in. I barely recognize the area anymore. In fact, the area south of Roosevelt looks entirely different. They turned the Meadow Gold frozen warehouse into a highrise condominium, for crying out loud! That was nothing but soot-covered abandoned shell when I lived there. It looked like in might fall in on itself--probably killing a dozen or so squatters.

You don't have to move to Montana to be on America's frontier. South Loop residents were pioneers, too.

:gulp:

Nellsin
01-05-2002, 10:39 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by PaleHoseGeorge
[B]

Do you live near there, Nellsin?


Yep, I'm in the hood 15 years. 11th & State is coming down, to be replaced by a high-rise with condos and (gasp) some retail on the lower floors, but the new First District is at 18th & State, so there'll always be cops at White Hen. :D: The new police HQ is at 35th & Wabash, so now Comiskey is safe too!

As for the cold storage warehouse, I thought the developers should have kept the enormous "Beatrice" painted at the top but oddly enough they didn't. When a Sox home run is hit at Comiskey, if you run up to my roof deck quickly you see the fireworks over the top of that building.

Municipal Tire & Wheel still at 18th & Wabash but Warshawsky Automotive at State & Archer long gone; you can see the old brick foundation walls as they excavate for (ahem) a new residential development -- the picture's very pretty, all red brick.

What next, Ronnie Woo hanging out at our local bars? :gulp:

ExSoxFan
01-05-2002, 12:06 PM
I'm not optimistic about the "gentrification" of that area, anyway. I look at the area around the United Center, and I realize just how long the process can take. They started buying up lots around the UC in 1995, and the area doesn't look ALL that different. Some of the eyesore houses are gone, but it's not exactly the Gold Coast, either.

I have a bad feeling that we'll see Walgreens, Starf*cks, CVS Pharmacy, McDonald's and every other putrid business we see popping up like toadstools all over Chicago surrounding Comiskey.
On the bright side, maybe there'll be one or two decent saloons around it, too - maybe even one where the locals don't try to kill anyone who "ain't from around here".

...and of couse you'll see 10,000 Streetwise "salesmen" around there, too...

CubKilla
01-05-2002, 05:14 PM
The sooner the Projects are demolished the better. No sightline to the SE of Comiskey Park is better than the sightline currently viewed. I also wondered why they are knocking them down with a wrecking ball when, in the condition the tenants left those buildings in, a well placed M-80 could possibly bring down the whole structure. Oh well! Mayor Daley would also like you to know that public assisted housing tenants, the same ones left homeless by these wrecking balls, are coming to mingle in a neighborhood near you.

nut_stock
01-06-2002, 03:55 PM
They ought to look into creating a big parking Lot directly across the Interstate from the ball park and developing some of the Lots on the Comiskey Side (aka build some bars and restaraunts)

FarmerAndy
01-07-2002, 12:35 PM
Originally posted by nut_stock
They ought to look into creating a big parking Lot directly across the Interstate from the ball park and developing some of the Lots on the Comiskey Side (aka build some bars and restaraunts)

That's the best idea I've heard all day! There will be plenty of room on the other side of the Interstate once they clear out the R.T. Homes. It's not that bad of a walk either, just think of how far away people have to park from Wrigley. A walk over the Interstate isn't too bad. (I've had to do it a few times.) It would be alot cozier around the park if they had small streets surrounding it, complete with storefronts, bars, restaraunts, ect. This could be done with the lots directly around the park. They could also build multi level parking garages on the lots further south of the park, that way you could park more cars on the same amount of land.

Oh, dare to dream.

RedPinStripes
01-07-2002, 12:46 PM
Originally posted by CubsF'nBlow
Oh well! Mayor Daley would also like you to know that public assisted housing tenants, the same ones left homeless by these wrecking balls, are coming to mingle in a neighborhood near you.

Yup. That's why I'm moving back to the city. All these projects that are being wrecked are being replaced in hte west suburbs. The government is buying large apartment complexes and slowly turning them into projects. I'm not going to get into what goes on around my house in the past few years, but they are really fixing up parts of the southside. Bridgeport and the midway area are much nicer then they were 10 years ago. I'm going back home. To hell with the burbs.