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Here Now, Curbed's Bucktown Architectural Walking Tour

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For those unacquainted with Bucktown, or for the well-acquainted who've grown jaded to the many delightful old cottages, churches, commercial buildings, and new-builds, Curbed is about to give you a reason to lift those eyes and look around. We present our Architectural Walking Tour of Bucktown. Our 21 mapped sites hit on the diversity of the 'hood's buildings, primarily in its housing stock. Our selections are meant as highlights in an area impossible to overrepresent owing to its great variety in style and taste. As it happens, we gravitated to a good number of contemporary new-builds which began arriving en masse 15 years ago or so. Boom time development reached the point where entire blocks of slick town homes, single-fams, and converted warehouse lofts took hold, particularly on blocks flanking Milwaukee and the "L".

Local landmarks include the Coyote Building, Noel State Bank Building (with its blinged-out Walgreens), Saint Mary of the Angels Church, Urban Sandbox, and Urban Treehouse. Many lesser sites are not known by proper names, so you'd probably not know to look for them. Interesting residential architecture is metastasizing around the Bloomingdale Trail, so that makes for a good launch point. Or, work east to west as we've plotted our map points. The neighborhood is larger than it seems once you try and canvas its blocks so we shaved our area of interest down to the neat rectangle framed by Western, Armitage, Ashland, and North. There's still a lot to see within this grid, so halving it at Damen isn't a bad plan for an afternoon stroll. And even though this is a walking tour, hopping the bike isn't frowned upon.
·Architectural Walking Tours [Curbed Chicago]

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Urban Treehouse

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The former Sisters of the Resurrection convent, attached to Saint Mary of the Angels, Urban Treehouse is now a high-end condo building ever-so-carefully converted last year by Ranquist Development. Admire the restored elegant detailing and grand stature.

Saint Mary of the Angels Church

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This massive church and school complex is one of the most visible Bucktown landmarks, commonly seen poking up when traveling the Kennedy. It dodged demolition in the 1980s and has embarked on a multi-million dollar campaign to "save the dome".

1842 N Wood

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4,000 square-foot contempo by local firm Funke Architects.

1736 N Wood

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1758 N Honore

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A newly completed environmentally-sensitive home designed by Morgante-Wilson really struts its stuff along the Bloomingdale Trail. It contributes to a sense of intensification and modern design on lots near the rail bed-- soon to be a showcase recreational space.

1810 N Honore

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1822 N Honore

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1825 W Wabansia

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1610 N Honore

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Urban Sandbox

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Another Ranquist venture, Urban Sandbox is a mix of condos and large single-families-- as hip and modern as can be. There's still one development lot to fill, but the project endured lackluster early sales to become a big deal for the neighborhood.

Coyote Building

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Also known as Northwest Tower, the Coyote is the iconic landmark of both Bucktown and Wicker Park. The flatiron design is an unusual one in Chicago, and thus has attracted conversion interest from hotels and apartment builders over the years. Although overdue, no adaptation and/or renovation plan has stuck.

Noel State Bank Building

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The rotund former bank building at Six Corners has gotten gobs of attention since Walgreens restored the structure and made it home to an over-the-top flagship store. Do yourself a favor and pop inside (we didn't say buy anything).

M. Houlberg Company Building

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This small Milwaukee Ave commercial building was built by a Danish immigrant who had started life in America as a painter at the White City. M. Houlberg soon established his own paint business in a building wearing traditional Scandinavian detail.

2052 W North

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This is the only building we know of in town, apart from North Beach's Castaways, that was meant to look like a ship. Its model is pretty clearly the rear of a cruise ship or gigantic yacht-- a nice suggestion of "luxury". What a hoot!

1729 N Hoyne

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This large single-fam borrows heavily from Frank Lloyd Wright, which isn't that bad of thing. You may find the material choices don't quite measure up.

1807 N Hoyne

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This is a pair of homes, built in reflection of one another. The glassier half is unocuppied and leaves the impression of abandoned development. But it just hasn't sold. A commenter notes that the place is out of foreclosure and will undergo renovations and re-listing in short order.

1804 N Leavitt

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1840 N Leavitt

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1851-53 N Leavitt

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Kling Brothers & Co Building

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This is a supremely handsome 160-unit warehouse conversion near Western Ave. There are others like it in Bucktown, but generally with less ornament and scale.

Floyd's Pub

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Your most important stop will certainly be the end-of-the-tour watering hole. There are dozens to choose from, but we're recommending Floyd's Pub on Armitage for its popular appeal and the building's roots as a Schlitz brewpub. There were 60-some-odd brewpubs bearing the classic globe a century ago, and this is one of only a few remaining.

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Urban Treehouse

The former Sisters of the Resurrection convent, attached to Saint Mary of the Angels, Urban Treehouse is now a high-end condo building ever-so-carefully converted last year by Ranquist Development. Admire the restored elegant detailing and grand stature.

Saint Mary of the Angels Church

This massive church and school complex is one of the most visible Bucktown landmarks, commonly seen poking up when traveling the Kennedy. It dodged demolition in the 1980s and has embarked on a multi-million dollar campaign to "save the dome".

1842 N Wood

4,000 square-foot contempo by local firm Funke Architects.

1736 N Wood

1758 N Honore

A newly completed environmentally-sensitive home designed by Morgante-Wilson really struts its stuff along the Bloomingdale Trail. It contributes to a sense of intensification and modern design on lots near the rail bed-- soon to be a showcase recreational space.

1810 N Honore

1822 N Honore

1825 W Wabansia

1610 N Honore

Urban Sandbox

Another Ranquist venture, Urban Sandbox is a mix of condos and large single-families-- as hip and modern as can be. There's still one development lot to fill, but the project endured lackluster early sales to become a big deal for the neighborhood.

Coyote Building

Also known as Northwest Tower, the Coyote is the iconic landmark of both Bucktown and Wicker Park. The flatiron design is an unusual one in Chicago, and thus has attracted conversion interest from hotels and apartment builders over the years. Although overdue, no adaptation and/or renovation plan has stuck.

Noel State Bank Building

The rotund former bank building at Six Corners has gotten gobs of attention since Walgreens restored the structure and made it home to an over-the-top flagship store. Do yourself a favor and pop inside (we didn't say buy anything).

M. Houlberg Company Building

This small Milwaukee Ave commercial building was built by a Danish immigrant who had started life in America as a painter at the White City. M. Houlberg soon established his own paint business in a building wearing traditional Scandinavian detail.

2052 W North

This is the only building we know of in town, apart from North Beach's Castaways, that was meant to look like a ship. Its model is pretty clearly the rear of a cruise ship or gigantic yacht-- a nice suggestion of "luxury". What a hoot!

1729 N Hoyne

This large single-fam borrows heavily from Frank Lloyd Wright, which isn't that bad of thing. You may find the material choices don't quite measure up.

1807 N Hoyne

This is a pair of homes, built in reflection of one another. The glassier half is unocuppied and leaves the impression of abandoned development. But it just hasn't sold. A commenter notes that the place is out of foreclosure and will undergo renovations and re-listing in short order.

1804 N Leavitt

1840 N Leavitt

1851-53 N Leavitt

Kling Brothers & Co Building

This is a supremely handsome 160-unit warehouse conversion near Western Ave. There are others like it in Bucktown, but generally with less ornament and scale.

Floyd's Pub

Your most important stop will certainly be the end-of-the-tour watering hole. There are dozens to choose from, but we're recommending Floyd's Pub on Armitage for its popular appeal and the building's roots as a Schlitz brewpub. There were 60-some-odd brewpubs bearing the classic globe a century ago, and this is one of only a few remaining.