Realizing the potential of Chicago's abandoned buildings

January 19, 2012

Produced by Eight Forty-Eight

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(WBEZ/Lee Bey)
Skokie-based Weiss Properties seeks to preserve and redevelop Lincolnwood's Purple Hotel--provided it isn't demolished.

After asking listeners to consider what they would sell if in need of some fast cash--ideas ranged from wedding gifts to coffins--Eight Forty-Eight wondered: How about buildings? Maybe every day Chicagoans walk by a particular abandoned building and realize there are things they admire about it. Does it get demolished or should it be brought back to life?

WBEZ blogger Lee Bey recently wrote about an effort to save what many Chicagoans simply refer to as the Purple Hotel in Lincolnwood. Maybe drivers have seen it as they make their way to the Edens Expressway. Bey joined Eight Forty-Eight along with David Schalliol, a visiting assistant professor of social sciences at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Schalliol is also a photographer with a series out called Working Legacies: The Death and After Life of Post Industrial Milwaukee and a new feature on Gapers Block called To Be Demolished.