West Pullman Elementary school, a historic neighborhood school on Chicago’s far South Side, has been sensitively adapted into affordable housing for senior citizens. MHA Chicago provided historic tax credit consulting services for the $21 million project by developers Celadon Holdings, LLC and UrbanWorks. The Romanesque Revival and Classical Revival style building was originally built in three phases in 1894, 1900, and 1923 to accommodate the influx of new students in the neighborhood. The school served the population of the West Pullman community area until 2013 when the school was closed along with many other city schools.
Significant exterior and interior architectural features were preserved at the school. The exterior of the building features historic materials including red press brick with terra cotta and limestone trim. The new 60 residential units retain character-defining features of a former school, including original chalkboards, built-in bookcases, broad corridors, and a former nurse’s office. The school's former large assembly spaces including the historic gymnasium and auditorium, were also retained. The rehabilitation and construction work created more than 75 jobs for local jobs and two permanent positions were added to staff the finished facility.
- Architect Magazine | 2021 Residential Architect Design Award – Merit Winner – Renovation / Adaptive Reuse
- Commission on Chicago Landmarks | 2021 Preservation Excellence Award
- Landmarks Illinois | 2021 Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Preservation Award for Adaptive Reuse
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