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The four-story building on North Dearborn Parkway was completed in 1914 to “provide a safe, supporting, and economical residence for young women to study the arts . . . ” According to Robert Bruegman's invaluable monograph on Holabird and Roche, The Architects and the City, it was the first real work of 27-year-old John A. Holabird, freshly returned from an education at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and a grand European tour.
Despite its upscale neighborhood, the Three Arts Club was not a lavish structure. It was pretty much a large sorority house, completed at a modest cost of $200,000. Its frame was not of steel, but reinforced concrete, with 110 rooms placed around a central courtyard.
Fontaine des Innocents in Paris.
|photograph: Dada, Wikipedia|
Now Curbed Chicago and Crain's Chicago Business are reporting that current owner, DRW Holdings LLC, wants to make the Three Arts Club a showroom outpost for the Restoration Hardware chain, complete with cafe. The proposal would also encompass restoring windows and terra cotta and making mechanical upgrades to the building, which was designated an official Chicago landmark in 1981.
Evicted Three Arts Club members may get to return - but only if they're very, very quiet.
Three Arts Club Won't See Dead People