After speaking with downtown photographer, Bob Thall at Columbia College, I continued to move north through the alleys bumping into the beautiful Prie Scott building and a couple other Chicago gems.
Bob described a Chicago with a fleeting past – a downtown losing its best century through souless envelope maxing developments without the scale of the beginning of the city. His book on alleys is the third in a series of four on various layers of the downtown. He seems to have a similar fascination with their ability to very bluntly show history and give a sense of the city that cannot be experienced in the continually remodeled streets and storefronts.
I then spent a good deal of time looking at the first downtown green alley, Couch Place, which unifies a fee theaters’ entries south of the river. The permeable paving looked similar to small bricks with gravel in the joints. The clean lines have the space a more civic appearance. I hope to meet tomorrow with the department of transportation office responsible for the green alleys to discuss their successes.