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Developer Dumps Controversial Plan to Demolish Historic Old Town Building

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The battle to save the building at 159 West Burton Place has come to its conclusion, as the building's owner has decided to drop plans to redevelop it in favor for new residences. According to preservationist Zac Bleicher of the Edgar Miller Legacy, the house has been sold to "someone who will protect the building and supports the landmarking of the West Burton Place District." The battle began just a month ago when preservationists were alerted of the possible demolition of the building by a developer who purchased the property this past April for $1.35 million. Old Town residents also joined in on the fight, and gathered nearly 2,000 signatures to save the old building from the wrecking ball. The building is notable or being a part of the Carl Street Studios development that was created by the architects architects Sol Kogen and Edgar Miller in the 1920s. The development is partially responsible for the Old Town neighborhood's revival and reputation as a cultural and arts hub in Chicago.

In July, the developer obtained a demolition permit for the building. While it seemed too late to save this particular building, preservationists pushed for a historic district for the stretch of homes on Burton Place. Earlier this month the Commission on Chicago Landmarks unanimously approved the motion, leading to a scenario where the affected building could receive landmark protection if the City Council gives the final OK.

UPDATE 8.15.15: You may have wondered whether your signature on the Save Our Story petition could possibly make a...

Posted by Bill Blidy on Saturday, August 15, 2015

In a letter to supporters, Bleicher urges other communities to continue fighting for their historic buildings. "Needless to say, we are all thrilled with this outcome, and we once again would like to thank everyone on the block and from throughout the larger community who came in to help save the historic street," Bleicher states, "We hope this success story inspires others to protect their beautiful neighborhoods from careless destruction."

·Landmarks Approves Effort to Protect Carl Street Studios Building [Curbed Chicago]
·Developer Gets Demo Permit for Carl Street Studios Building [Curbed Chicago]
·Old Town's Historic Carl Street Studios Building Under Threat [Curbed Chicago]