Then and Now, Milwaukee-Gresham

1908–Milwaukee Avenue @ Gresham Avenue, view northwest

2019–the same location

In 1908 electric streetcars had recently replaced cable cars on Milwaukee Avenue.  Here on the 2900-north block, a ribbon commercial strip had already developed.  Plans were underway to extend the Metropolitan ‘L’ line from its terminal at Logan Square northwest in the alley behind Milwaukee Avenue.  That promised to bring even more business to the area.

The extension of the ‘L’ northwest from Logan Square took a lot longer than had been envisioned—over 60 years.  When that extension was finally pushed through in 1970, the trains used the Kennedy Expressway median instead of the Milwaukee Avenue alley.  Yet today the commercial strip here still thrives, with some new construction replacing older buildings.


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