Encyclopedia o f Chicago
Interpretive Digital Essay : The Plan of Chicago
The Plan of Chicago
Chicago in 1909
Planning Before the Plan
Antecedents and Inspirations
The City the Planners Saw
The Plan of Chicago
The Plan Comes Together
Creating the Plan
Reading the Plan
A Living Document
Railway Exchange Building
Return to "Creating the Plan"

The Railway Exchange Building (now named the Santa Fe Building) opened in 1904 at 224 South Michigan Avenue. It is the central building in this view of Michigan Avenue from across the Illinois Central tracks in Grant Park, between the former Straus Building and the Borg-Warner Building. Burnham and Company not only had its offices on the fourteenth floor (the building has seventeen stories), but Burnham also had invested in the structure. By zooming in on the northeast corner of the roof, one can see the top of the "penthouse" Burnham had built as the space where the Plan of Chicago was to be prepared. This was also where many visitors were brought to view the work-in-progress.