Encyclopedia o f Chicago
Interpretive Digital Essay : Water in Chicago
Essay: People and the Port
Photo Essays:
Solitary Lives
City of Bridges
Chicago Harbors
Essay: Using the Chicago River
Photo Essays:
Goose Island
Indiana Dunes
Essay: Sanitation in Chicago
Photo Essays:
The Sanitary and Ship Canal
Water-Related Epidemics
Essay: Water and Urban Life
Photo Essays:
Houses and Water
Shoreline Development
Growing Up Along Water
Shoreline Development

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The Plan of Chicago

Public interests in the use and development of the lakefront shoreline, including the fight for municipal beaches, benefited significantly in 1909 with the publication of the Plan of Chicago, originally drafted by Daniel Burnham under the sponsorship of the Commercial Club of Chicago. Burnham's plan called for the development of a continuous lakefront park area extending from the north edge of the city to the state's border on the south. In 1910, in support of the Plan, the Chicago City Council established the Lake Shore Reclamation Commission to pursue legal means to give the South Park Commission title and possession of the lakeshore south of Grant Park. For the next two decades park commissioners implemented some of the improvements called for in the plan. By mid-century, however, private use of some of Chicago's lakeshore once again challenged public use and control.

Burnham Park

In the Plan of Chicago, Daniel Burnham and a team of artists offered their vision of a lagoon strectching south along the lakefront from Grant Park to Jackson Park. Although this particular plan was not implemented, during the 1920s and 1930s South Park Commissioners coordinated the extension of Lake Front Park south of 12th Street. Streching for miles along the city's lakefront, Burnham Park, as it was renamed, included Northerly Island (south of 12th Street) and Promontory Point (near 55th Street and the lake).

See also: Burnham Plan; Near South Side; Park Districts; Waterfront

Waveland Fieldhouse

In 1925 the city began to develop the north lakeshore from Diversey Parkway to Montrose Avenue, including Waveland Fieldhouse in Lincoln Park. Expansion of the park north to Foster Avenue and the development of Montrose Harbor began in 1934, after the consolidation of the Chicago park system.

See also: Lakeview; Lincoln Park; Park Districts; Waterfront

"The Story of the Lake Front"

The Chicago Park District (CPD) was created in 1934 as a consolidation of twenty-two park boards, including the South Park Commissioners and the Lincoln Park Board Commissioners. Two years later the CPD detailed the development of the lakefront in a handbook on Chicago parks.

See also: Burnham Plan; Park Districts; Waterfront

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