Chicago Landmarks

Historic Michigan Boulevard District

View north from 400 S. Michigan Ave.     Address: Michigan Avenue, between 11th and Randolph Streets
Year Built: 1882 - 1930
Architect: Various
Date Designated a Chicago Landmark: February 27, 2002

View south from 100 S. Michigan Ave. View south from 400 N. Michigan Ave. Michigan Avenue is one of the world's most-recognized one-sided streets, like New York City's Fifth Avenue or Edinburgh's Princes Street-an incomparable backdrop to Grant Park and Lake Michigan. Michigan Avenue is the most enduring image of the Chicago skyline, the image of the city which most often represents Chicago to the rest of the world. The district strongly reflects the city's development as a handsome lakefront metropolis during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. As the location of many significant cultural institutions, clubs, hotels, and prestigious office buildings, the district played a decisive role in the social, economic, and cultural history of the city.

The district contains some of Chicago's finest individual buildings, and it has been said of the Michigan Avenue "streetwall" that it is "as if some of the best of Chicago architecture gathered along the lakefront, and posed for a group photo." Many of these buildings were designed by Chicago's most important architects, including Adler & Sullivan, Louis Sullivan, D. H. Burnham, Holabird & Roche, Marshall & Fox, Henry Ives Cobb, S. S. Beman, and Graham, Anderson, Probst & White.