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Showing posts with label national monument. Show all posts
Showing posts with label national monument. Show all posts

Friday, September 3, 2021

Urbanize Chgo: Historic Pullman Nat'l Monument ready for Labor Day grand opening #Ward09

The Chicago Neighborhoods

Something to look forward to this weekend the National Monument in the historic Pullman neighborhood in our part of the city will have a grand opening this coming weekend.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Historic Pullman on Christmas Eve 2020


[VIDEO] It's a bit snowy in Pullman isn't it. As depicted in these scenes uploaded this morning as we seen in this video of the historic planned company town/Chicago neighborhood, now a national monument.

I hope you all have a safe, festive, and happy holidays this year.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Chicago Mag: Pullman’s Renaissance #Ward09 #BuildingwithBeale

Published on October 26th, 2018 I'm sorry that I only found out about it recently. A lot of good things is going on in that part of the city.
In the coming weeks, construction crews will begin meticulously restoring the roof and upper floor windows of the landmark Pullman Clock Tower and Administration Building, the former headquarters of the company that developed the neighborhood and forever changed rail travel in the 19th century.

Nearly lost in an arson attack in 1998, the structure is being overhauled for its next life as the visitor center for the Pullman National Monument, Chicago’s first ever site in the national park system. The roof work, funded by a $2.2 million grant from the National Park Service, is expected to take six months.

Construction on the old administrative building comes more than three years after President Obama dedicated the site as a national monument, setting into motion a restoration that Pullman residents and preservationists have long called for. According to Kathleen Schneider, the first superintendent of Pullman National Monument, there are a mix of public and private funds earmarked for the restoration, including more than $13 million from the National Park Foundation.

“We’re only three years old with a staff of three people,” Schneider says of the new national monument. “Although it may appear that not a lot is happening, we’ve been working hard with the State of Illinois and community on the 2020 opening of the visitors center.”

Schneider says the site’s educational programming will center on Pullman’s legacy as a planned neighborhood and as an integral site in the labor and civil rights movements. Specifically, the visitor center will spotlight the internal clashes that led to the Pullman Strike of 1894 and formation of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters.

As for community partners, Schneider highlights the Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives (CNI) group, a nonprofit developer that has helped bring investment to the greater Pullman area in recent years. While the Clock Tower’s restoration represents a symbolic rebirth of the historic district, newer facilities including a Whole Foods distribution center, an expanded greenhouse by produce supplier Gotham Greens, and soap maker Method have reinvigorated the neighborhood’s identity as an industrial hub.
Great to see the progress in nearby Pullman.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Washington Monthly: South Side story

The Chicago Neighborhoods
 Sorry to have sat on this since the spring. A story about the Pullman neighborhood. Or "How a historic Chicago neighborhood became a national model for community revitalization."
Yet one lower-income South Side neighborhood manages to defy the ironclad logic of the favored quarter: historic Pullman, a vibrant enclave in the middle of the South Side that is home to equal numbers of African Americans, Latinos, and whites. (Not all South and West neighborhoods are poor, but most of those doing well economically—Hyde Park, the Near West Side, Bridgeport, and Beverly—are predominantly white and Asian.)

Strolling down Pullman’s St. Lawrence Avenue, whose shaded sidewalks are fronted by side-by-side duplexes, you notice the same redbrick charm that characterizes the North Side. Yet in Pullman, you can land a well-kept three-bedroom duplex down the block from a cozy cafĂ© and around the corner from one of the city’s top-rated public elementary schools at a price that wouldn’t go far in swank precincts across town. Residents enjoy many of the conveniences of North Side living, too. At the new Pullman Park development, there’s a Walmart (watering this former food desert), a clothing store, a Planet Fitness health club, a locally owned dry cleaners, and Pullman’s first sit-down restaurant in decades.

The relative peace and prosperity of Pullman in the midst of the hard-hit South Side highlights the promise of “asset-based” community development—the idea that focusing on the strengths of a particular place is just as important as targeting the problems. This model offers practical lessons for other neighborhoods across the country suffering from economic disinvestment and social unraveling. In Pullman’s case, a remarkable degree of resilience has arisen from these assets: high levels of civic engagement; a physical environment that encourages walking and social interaction; access to resources tied to historic preservation; and an ambitious community developer planting stakes in the neighborhood.

If the name Pullman sounds vaguely familiar, it’s likely because of the legendary railroad sleeping cars built here from 1881 to 1955. Pullman was no grimy slum, but actually one of the most celebrated urban planning projects of the nineteenth century—providing a good place to live was part of owner George Pullman’s mission to elevate the character of his workers. The London Times declared the elegant public buildings and squares flanked by single-family homes for managers and handsome brick townhouses for workers “the most perfect town in the world.” The other reason you may have heard of Pullman is that in 1894 the company’s workers responded to wage cuts with no reduction in rent at company-owned housing with a historic strike.
Read the whole thing!

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Tribune: Politics, funding impede Pullman restoration as monument approaches 3rd anniversary

Via The Chicago Neighborhoods
This Tribune article updates us on the progress of that Pullman National Monument announced by then President Barack Obama in 2015:
Since 2015, Pullman National Monument has moved sluggishly toward these goals. The state-owned grounds are in the midst of an extensive cleanup from decades of industrial waste. The National Park Service’s visitors center, planned for the clock tower building, has been pushed back at least a year. Plans mapping out the monument’s long-term future were supposed to be completed within three years but are only now beginning. State and federal money has been minimal, and progress on some projects has been slowed because of several federal government shutdowns and an unprecedented two-year state budget standoff.

The one project that could move forward, an apartment building for artists, is on hold after federal officials told the developers to seek additional input from the public.

“My wife and I have been here for 50 years, and we’ve seen different cycles and levels of interest from people working in Pullman,” said resident Mike Shymanski. Progress “takes time and takes patience, but once the restoration is done it’ll be around a long time.”

Pullman was expected to draw 300,000 visitors per year by 2025, however, with its current annual attendance at only 50,000, those estimates seem ambitious.

Now, the park is contending with a president who is less supportive of conservation. The Trump administration recently shrunk two Utah national monuments, bringing about at least two legal challenges and legislation to counter the move.
Here's something from Tribune Graphics showing a map of the Pullman area under the national parks.
While it's not looking that good there are some positive developments:
The first floor of the state-owned Hotel Florence could open even sooner, possibly over the summer after contractors finish building an accessibility ramp and restoring and furnishing the elaborate interior.

The park service also plans to work outside the monument to generate buzz through a grant from the McCormick Foundation to develop curriculum in area classrooms on nationally significant themes: transformation of passenger rail travel, urban planning, Pullman’s role in the American labor movement and the porters’ civil rights movement.
What are the plans for the Hotel Florence? I'm very keen on finding out!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Curbed Chicago: Plan to renovate Pullman’s historic 1880 factory building is moving forward

Plans are being made to turn the historic Pullman factory and clock tower - located at 111th Street and Cottage Grove Avenue - to become a visitor center. In addition there will be a interpretive center and HQ for National Park Service operations. This is an initiative of the National Park Service and Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Tribune: Volunteers help spruce up Pullman neighborhood
Via The Chicago Neighborhoods
Yesterday, I posted about the attention being given to Englewood and then found this article about the attention given to Pullman. Pullman was designated a national monument and that means it will be getting further attention in years to come.
When railroad baron George Pullman built the Hotel Florence in 1881 in the heart of his company town, he meant for the extravagant Queen Anne style inn to host businessmen and dignitaries.

In addition to hotel rooms, the building featured a dining room, billiard room, barber shop, separate men's and women's parlors, and the only bar. Over the past several decades, most of the four-story, 50-room hotel, named after one of Pullman's daughters, has remained closed during restoration efforts, which include a new slate roof and an elevator.

On Thursday, with the building's doorways still draped in sheets of plastic and much of the ornate ceilings in its rooms still in the process of being torn down, the hotel hosted new guests. Five months after President Barack Obama named a portion of the historic Pullman neighborhood a national monument, volunteer Sam Gutterman and others helped clean up the hotel's main entrance.

"It's getting closer to having people attracted to come here," said Gutterman, 67, who lives on the North Shore, as he washed the first floor windows with a rag. "Because if it's in rundown condition no one's going to want to come here, no one's going to want to learn about the history. If you make things a little more attractive — it doesn't have to be perfect — people will appreciate it."

The hotel was among half a dozen sites in the Pullman neighborhood that were targeted in the first major cleanup of the area by the National Parks Conservation Association.

Several dozen volunteers grabbed ponchos to combat the rain and fanned out across the historic factory district. Among the efforts: A team of volunteers painted the baseboards of Greenstone United Methodist Church; another group weeded around the Historic Pullman Foundation Visitors Center, and a local landscaping company donated mulch and assisted in sprucing up Arcade Park.
Of course the 9th Ward Alderman jumped on some of this attention:
 Ald. Anthony Beale, 9th, who also was in attendance, still remembers riding his bike past the historic row houses and other architectural gems as a child, thinking "it was like driving through another world." Witnessing the cleanup and initiatives since the national monument designation has been especially poignant for Beale, given the huge blow the community suffered in 1998 when an arsonist destroyed much of the factory district and damaged the administration building.

"To be able to quarterback the rebirth of this ..." said Beale, who paused as he looked toward a damaged factory building with black tarps covering its structural beams. "I can't even put words on it.
There's already ranger overseeing this park:
Sue Bennett has become the park's first full-time employee taking on the role of acting superintendent. Bennett has worked across the country as a park ranger for 26 years, most recently at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Though the national park still doesn't have a budget (that usually is set up after two years by Congress), the Illinois native says she's been lucky to lean on a number of established community organizations for help.

"I never dreamed when I started on my journey that I'd be back in my home state in a city that I love and doing the kind of service work, community outreach and preservation and stewardship, here," Bennett said. "So I'm the luckiest park ranger in the world in that I have at least 10 key partners that have been here on the ground and doing work to make it easier for us."
It's good to know the community has stepped up to the plate at least until Congress finally sets up a budget for the Pullman nat'l monument.

How long until Pullman gets their own Starbuck's? Would it be located at the Hotel Florence?

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

DNA Info: Planners Dreaming Up What's Next for Pullman National Monument

Via Chicago Neighborhoods
Mark Konkol who just so happens to be a Pullman resident talks about the implications of the neighborhood becoming a national monument as declared not long before the February municipal elections:
Pullman’s days as a cute historic district with a pretty cool house tour are officially over. Now, the neighborhood has a shot to be a national model for inner-city renewal, creative public transportation and urban tourism that has the attention of architects and city planners from across the country.

And for that, the National Park Conservation Association and the American Institute of Architects have rounded up some of the nation’s most prominent architects, economists, transportation gurus and historic preservationists for a three-day brainstorming session aimed on creative ways to capitalize on the neighborhood’s new national status.

Starting Thursday, about 40 professionals who know a thing or two about making big plans for urban areas will gather in Pullman to come up with plans for everything from renovating Metra stations and restoring historic ruins to coming up with a blueprint for bolstering local business and safer ways to walk across 111th Street.

“We want to visualize what Pullman might look like in 10 years with the influence of the national monument designation,” said Lynn McClure, the conservation association's Midwest senior director.
I could only envision this is not only good for Pullman but good for neighboring Roseland as well.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Pullman to become a national monument

Via The Chicago Neighborhoods
Great news for the south side, hopefully the surrounding areas will reap the benefits. And just in time for Black History Month, we also learn the pivotal role of Pullman for Black history via Chicago Tribune. Especially since Pullman's main employer was a manufacturer of rail cars that had been staffed with blacks once these cars were on the rails.

Of course let's not forget labor history. Pullman was a site of a major strike once that saw federal troops intervene. Also the mainly Black Pullman porters agitated successfully for a union even if most of them didn't call Pullman home.

I forgot to note that next week, Pullman will be declared a national monument. I'd be excited to see what this development will bring! :)