PETITION: SAVE the Century & Consumers Buildings! STOP the $52M Demolition! (Chicago 7 2011, 2013 & 2022)

Save the Century & Consumers Buildings!
Stop the $52M Demolition!
Chicago’s Early Chicago Skyscrapers are currently being considered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
But the possible demolition of the Century and Consumers Buildings would jeopardize this extraordinary designation and international recognition.
And just as the historic buildings were on the verge of being beautifully restored, the Feds earmarked $52 million taxpayers dollars to demolish these two outstanding Early Chicago Skyscrapers and replace them with…a permanent fenced security zone with perimeter landscaping, which will become a permanent void in State Street’s historic streetwall.
Their claim is that the demolition is required because there is no plan for reuse and that the rear windows endanger the adjacent courthouse security.
But there IS an adaptive reuse plan that addresses the security concerns. It’s brilliant, creative, and its stakeholders are highly motivated to move forward.
After two years of planning, the Chicago Collaborative Archives Center’s adaptive reuse plan has motivated leadership, support from nearly 20 archives, and interest from financial strong institutions. Detailed plans and architectural drawings were presented at the widely covered press conference on May 18, 2022.
Most importantly, this creative and innovative adaptive reuse plan was specifically designed to meet known security related issues, including bricking up rear windows and limiting access to upper floors.
Landmark or Landfill?
So after being vacant and mothballed for nearly twenty years, the fate of the historic Century and Consumers Buildings is about to be determined.
These proud and elegant Chicago School skyscrapers are located on State Street in the vibrant and thriving heart of Chicago’s Loop. The 16-story Century Building was built in 1915 and designed by Holabird and Roche. The 22-story Consumers Building was built in 1913 and designed by Jenney, Mundie & Jensen. Both are on listed on the National Register for Historic Places.
In 2005, the Federal Government took ownership of these buildings through its power of eminent domain with plans to renovate and reuse these buildings. But due to the lack of federal funding, the renovation never happened.
All will be lost if the $52 million dollars of federal funds are used to demolish the Century and Consumers Buildings.
1. We encourage the Illinois Delegation in Washington D.C. including Senator Dick Durbin (202-224-2152), Senator Tammy Duckworth (202-224-2854), and Congressman Danny Davis (202-225-5006) to take urgent action to support this effort.
2. We encourage the City of Chicago to take immediate steps to designate the Century and Consumers Buildings as Chicago Landmarks which would protect them from demolition.


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