by Michael R. Allen
Time Out Chicago has an excellent preservation issue now out. Read it online here.
There’s the expected section of endangered buildings, with featured sites ranging from worker’s homes in Humboldt Park (our neighborhood when we lived in Chicago two years ago) to the mid-century Meigs Field Terminal building to the Acme Coke Plant. Those are three examples not types often seen on preservationist lists. Then the magazine gives suggestions on how to lobby various officials and owners for preservation — very smart! The issue continues with examples of buildings rescued from demolition, and a longer article on a community center group that took a fire-damaged building on the brink of collapse and rebuilt as its home.
The features here are positive and action-oriented. The writers aren’t particular preachy or condescending. Instead, they are presenting historic preservation as a cultural necessity, and showing that even those most damaged buildings can be brought back to life. Rather than simply tell the reader that old buildings should be saved, the writers of these articles show the reader that these buildings can be saved, and let the reader choose to act.
This issue is some of the smartest preservation journalism that I have read lately. Wouldn’t it be great if a St. Louis newspaper did the same thing?
(Found via The Place Where We Live.)