Then and Now, Des Plaines-Lake

1949–Des Plaines Street @ Lake Street, view north
2021–the same location

Seventy-two years ago, this part of the Near West Side was a rundown area of small factories and warehouses.  Des Plaines Avenue was a local street with little through-traffic.  The 1949 photographer has managed to capture both a streetcar and an ‘L’ train running along Lake Street.

Today the Near West side is being revitalized.  Des Plaines Avenue is now a busy arterial route carrying traffic to and from Milwaukee Avenue.  The ‘L’ still runs, with newer cars.  And 72 years from now, will anyone remember why the woman in the 2021 photo was wearing a mask?


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