It is true that gangsters ruled the streets of Chicago in the 1920s. Michael Jordan played for the Chicago Bulls and Oprah may live there. However, it is the skyline decorated by famous buildings and the stories of the architects that shaped the city that bring this place to life.
Chicago, best-known as “The Windy City” is the third-largest city in the United States. It has been said that Chicago is also one of the most inhabitable and popular. It has a character all of its own. It is energetic, sophisticated and …different.
With its roots established in mid-western soil, Chicagos history dates back to the late 1600s. Two Frenchmen by the names of Marquet and Joliet discovered a passage that linked the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River Valley. A trading post was eventually set up on the north bank of the Chicago River. In 1836 Chicago was incorporated as a city with about 4,000 residents.
By 1855, Chicago was the chief railroad center of the Mid-West and by 1870s its numbers had grown to an impressive 300,000 making it arguably the fastest growing major city in history. However, tragedy struck in 1871 when The Great Chicago Fire destroyed large sections of the city.
Rebuilding of the city started before the ashes had time to cool. One of the advantages of having your town burn down is that you can rebuild it bigger, better and with style and that is just what happened in Chicago. From the ruins of the city emerged the birth of modern architecture and in 1882 the ten storey Montauk Building was erected. This was the world’s first skyscraper.
Nowadays, Chicago is an easy destination to access by plane, train or automobile. Chicago has two airports: O’Hare International Airport and Chicago Midway International Airport. O’Hare is the flight corridor to Chicago. It is one of the world’s busiest airports and is often a stopover for both domestic and international travelers. Midway is smaller, has fewer restaurants and shops, and serves primarily domestic destinations.
‘Chicagoans’ consider themselves residents of the Third Coast — Lake Michigan’s shore. Fortunately the shore has no warehouses or shipping docks. More than half of Chicago’s 2,800 acres of lakefront were created by filling in the lake and building a string of splendid lake-shore parks. The result is thirty miles of sand beaches, green lawns, beds of flowers and bicycle paths.
Chicago is a cosmopolitan metropolis bragging many different attractions. There are world re-known collections housed in an outstanding collection of museums. There are impressive buildings by internationally known architects that paint the sky. There are miles of gardens and recreational paths decorating a lakefront and there is Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs. Chicagos many attractions is one of the reason why the city has been described as vibrant and diverse with a unique feel about it which makes it very…different.