Sullivan Station

Chicago, Illinois

Sullivan Station, spearheaded by VOA Associates Incorporated, repairs a Chicago neighborhood torn by mid-20th Century urban renewal. The five-acre site was part of a low-rise South Side neighborhood torn apart to build high-rise public housing that was, in turn, demolished in the 1990s due to unlivable conditions.

This part of Chicago, heavily damaged by bad planning, is still in need of revitalization. Unfortunately, residents are sensitive and even cautious in the face of new development, having suffered through multiple destructive waves of urban renewal. Responding to the community’s concerns about design, the architects used Norman brick accented with decorative stone lintels, sills and belt courses, and painted steel floor-to-ceiling bay windows. “Attention to craft and architectural details, influenced by the community planning process, complements the fine detailing of vintage homes nearby,” they note.

Sullivan Station Chicago brownstone
The development took note of its historic context and built similarly to other properties in its neighborhood. Source: VOA Associates Incorporated.

The project provides “bright, comfortable apartments for our residents,” said the chair of a neighborhood steering committee. “It also provides indoor parking, offices for social service agents to help residents with a variety of needs, and a generous multi-purpose space with access to a landscaped garden.”

Sullivan Station offers a variety of affordable, subsidized, and market-rate rents to an area deeply in need of all three. An 81 unit, 8-story building features a mix of one-bedroom and two bedroom units. The building steps down on four stories on its west side in deference to vintage two-story homes on South Lake Park Avenue. In addition, 13 new low-rise buildings provide 51 three- and four-bedroom apartments for larger families. As the real estate market in the neighborhood grows stronger, more low-rise buildings and a condo tower will complete the 269-unit development.

Sullivan Station Chicago interior
An interior of a Sullivan Station residence. Source: VOA Associates Incorporated.

The units, with their bay windows, provide spectacular views of Lake Michigan. Sullivan Station is grouped around an existing lakeside park. Residents have access to public transportation. Sustainable features include rain gardens, stormwater storage, and green roofing, earning a LEED silver rating. “The overall appearance celebrates the city’s architectural heritage and complements the existing vintage masonry architecture of the neighborhood.”

Top photo: The high-rise portion of Sullivan Station. Source: VOA Associates Incorporated.

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