Then and Now, Clark-15th

1957–Clark Street @ 15th Street, view north

2020–the same location

In 1957 this stretch of Clark Street was a narrow little lane.  Squeezed in by the approaches to LaSalle Station (west side) and Dearborn Station (east side), the roadway also accommodated the tracks of streetcar route #22.  If you drove a car here, you could count on a slow trip.  That would give you time to contemplate the Board of Trade building, clearly visible in that 1957 photo.

The closing of Dearborn Station in 1971 allowed Clark Street to be widened.  A proposal to build a multi-purpose stadium on the land east of Clark went nowhere, and now apartments and townhouses occupy the property.  Though the Board of Trade is now obscured by another building, the Sears/Willis Tower has become the iconic exclamation point of this view.


2 Responses to “Then and Now, Clark-15th”

  1. 1 Garry December 3, 2020 at 1:18 pm

    There are two trolley wires in 1957. So were they using Clark for the Roosevelt road trolley bus for some reason? No other trolley bus came close to that location & the Roosevelt line had it’s own garage, separate from all the other trolley lines.

    • 2 J.R. Schmidt December 3, 2020 at 2:53 pm

      The two inner wires are the electric power wires for the streetcars. The two outer wires are there to help support the inner wires, because those garages on the right didn’t leave room for enough vertical poles—think of how a suspension bridge works. And I believe that in 1957, #52-Kedzie-California trolley buses operated out of Kedzie-Van Buren garage, along with #12-Roosevelt trolley buses.

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