West Loop Mercantile

Chicago’s visionary and generally well-conceived blueprint for the downtown area, Chicago Central Area Plan: Preparing the Central City for the 21st Century, called for the highest density of development to occur in the “westward expansion” of offices uses in the West Loop. Simultaneously, however, the plan wisely directs us to “preserve and strengthen the Central Area’s world-renowned architectural and cultural heritage.”

While these are admirable objectives, time has proven that such measures are not enough to preserve an area’s existing architecture, which is why in 2004 Preservation Chicago proposed the creation of a new landmark district that would protect what was left of the West Loop’s distinctive character.

Download the Original 2004 PDF and District Map