Pullman Historic District in Chicago Considered for National Park Status

Completed in 1880 as a company town by railcar tycoon George Pullman, the 300-acre Pullman Historic District in Chicago could be a beautiful addition to the National Park System.

Ian Fullerton reports on a recent study released by the National Park Service considering the 300-acre Pullman Historic District as the newest addition into the 400-site National Park System.

“Located 12 miles south of downtown, Pullman offers a detour for Chicago sightseers. Boasting historic buildings designed by architect Solon Spencer Beman—including the Hotel Florence, the Romanesque Market Square, and the fire-damaged Administration Buildings, which served as the executive offices of Pullman’s Palace Car Company—the area is already recognized by local and state historic landmark bodies.”

History has been kind to the neighborhood’s structures. “About 90 percent of the neighborhood’s original homes, most in the Queen Anne style, have been preserved,” reports Fullerton.

It isn’t easy to receive National Park status, even after the completion of such a request—most such reports do not lead to new National Parks. And as for property owners living within the park, should such an arrangement be approved, a lot would still need to be determined regarding “the way resources are administered and what kind of assistance would be given to property owners within the proposed borders.”

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