Michael Reese Hospital, over by 31st and King Drive, was once the largest hospital in Chicago, though today only one of its historic Gropius-influenced, Bauhaus-style buildings still stands—the rest is rubble. Preservationists tried to stop the hospital’s 2009-’10 demolition, meant to make way for the Olympic Village, especially after Chicago’s bid for the games fell through. But the wrecking ball swung anyway, and now the land lies fallow.
Since the controversial demolition, there has been little news about redeveloping the land. In May a Daley-appointed advisory panel suggested using the space for a tech park, presumably to spur the kind of growth that has lately revitalized rust belt Pittsburgh; that project would take 20 years to complete, Daley said at the time. “The city is looking at a number of different options, including the recommendations of that committee,” a spokesperson for Mayor Emanuel told me.
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