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Record #: O2021-5408   
Type: Ordinance Status: Passed
Intro date: 12/15/2021 Current Controlling Legislative Body: Committee on Zoning, Landmarks and Building Standards
Final action: 1/26/2022
Title: Historical landmark designation for Little Village Arch at 3100 W 26th St
Sponsors: Misc. Transmittal
Topic: HISTORICAL LANDMARKS - Designation
Attachments: 1. O2021-5408.pdf
Department of Planning and Development
CITY OF CHICAGO


December 9, 2021

The Honorable Anna M. Valencia City Clerk City of Chicago Room 107, City Hall 121 North LaSalle Street Chicago, Illinois 60602

RE: Ordinance designating the Little Village Arch (3100 W. 26th Street) as a Chicago Landmark

Dear Clerk Valencia:

We are filing with your office for introduction at the December 15, 2021, City Council meeting as a transmittal to the Mayor and City Council of Chicago the recommendation of the Commission on Chicago Landmarks that the Little Village Arch be designated as a Chicago Landmark.
The material being submitted to you for this proposal includes the:
Recommendation of the Commission on Chicago Landmarks; and
Proposed Ordinance.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter. Sincerely,


Kathleen E. Dickhut Deputy Commissioner
Bureau of Citywide Systems and Historic Preservation Department of Planning and Development

ends.

cc: Alderman George Cardenas, 12th Ward (via email w/ enclosure)


DEC9 '21 2:3iPM
121 NORTH LASALLE STREET, ROOM 1000, CHICAGO, ILLINOIS 60602


ORDINANCE
Little Village Arch 3100 W. 26th Street
a. to

CM

LLi

WHEREAS, pursuant to the procedures set forth in the Municipal Code of Chicago (the "Municipal Code"), Sections 2-120-620 through -690, the Commission on Chicago Landmarks (the "Commission") has determined that the Little Village Arch (the "Arch"), located at approximately 3100 W. 26th Street, Chicago, Illinois, as depicted in Exhibit A, attached hereto and incorporated herein, satisfies three (3) criteria for landmark designation as set forth in Section 2-120-620 (1), (4), and (5) ofthe Municipal Code; and

WHEREAS, with its Bienvenidos a Little Village sign, the Arch exemplifies the cultural and social heritage of the Mexican community in Chicago in general and the neighborhood of Little Village specifically; and
WHEREAS, the Arch spans West 26th Street, a commercial street with significant economic heritage as it has served waves of immigrant residents over time including Europeans and Mexicans. Though many of the buildings on West 26th Street were built prior to the community becoming Mexican, the community has added and preserved its own significant layer of culture to West 26th Street through language, food, religion, family structure, murals, music and dance; and

WHEREAS, the Arch is unique in Chicago as the only example of a street gateway inspired by historic gateways built at Mexican religious sites, haciendas and walled towns in the Colonial era. It may be the only such example north of the Rio Grande River; and

WHEREAS, with its clay tile roof, stucco towers with domed roofs, and tiled span, the Arch exhibits materials and design details that are typically found in Mexico and conveys the living heritage ofthe community in Little Village; and
WHEREAS, Mexican-American artist and architect Adrian Lozano holds the distinction of being involved in the design of three buildings in Chicago treasured by the Mexican community: the Little Village Arch, the National Museum of Mexican Art and Benito Juarez Community Academy; and

WHEREAS, in 1941 Lozano painted the Progress of Mexico, a mural inside the Benito Juarez Club room " at Hull House. Though the work no longer survives, it is significant as the first manifestation of the Mexican Muralism Movement in Chicago, a Movement that continues to thrive in the city; and
WHEREAS, consistent with Section 2-120-630 of the Municipal Code, the Arch has a significant historic, community, architectural, or aesthetic interest or value, the integrity of which is preserved in light of its location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, and ability to express such historic, community, architectural, or aesthetic interest or value; and

WHEREAS, on November 4, 2021, the Commission adopted a resolution recommending to the City Council of the City of Chicago (the "City Council") that the Arch be designated a Chicago Landmark; now, therefore,

BE IT ORDAINED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF CHICAGO:

SECTION 1. The above recitals are hereby adopted as the findings ofthe City Council.
SECTION 2. The Arch is hereby designated a Chicago Landmark in accordance with Section 2-120-700 of the Municipal Code.
SECTION 3. For purposes of Sections 2-120-740 and 2-120-770 ofthe Municipal Code governing permit review, the significant historical and architectural features of the Arch are identified as:
• All elevations, including the roofline, ofthe Arch

SECTION 4. The Commission is hereby directed to create a suitable plaque appropriately identifying the Arch as a Chicago Landmark.
SECTION 5. If any provision of this ordinance shall be held to be invalid or unenforceable for any reason, the invalidity or unenforceability of such provision shall not affect any of the other provisions of this ordinance.
SECTION 6. All ordinances, resolutions, motions or orders in conflict with this ordinance are hereby repealed to the extent of such conflict.
SECTION 7. This ordinance shall take effect upon its passage and approval.






















|1010|
EXHIBIT A

Address|1010|Approximately 3100 W. 26th Street (between S. Albany Avenue and S. Troy Street), Chicago Illinois


CITY OF CfflCAGO COMMISSION ON CHICAGO LANDMARKS

November 4,2021

RECOMMENDATION TO THE CITY COUNCIL OF CHICAGO THAT CHICAGO LANDMARK DESIGNATION BE ADOPTED FOR THE
LITTLE VILLAGE ARCH
3100 W. 26,h Street
Docket No. 2021-08



To the Mayor and Members ofthe City Council of the City of Chicago:

Pursuant to Section 2-120-690 of the Municipal Code of the City of Chicago (the "Municipal Code"), the Commission on Chicago Landmarks (the "Commission") has determined that the Little Village Arch (hereinafter, the "Arch") is worthy of designation as a Chicago I^dmark. On the basis of careful consideration of the history and architecture of the Arch, the Commission has found that it satisfies the following three (3) criteria set forth in Section 2-120-620 ofthe Municipal Code:

1. Its value as an example of the architectural, cultural, economic, historic, social, or other aspect of the heritage of the City of Chicago, State of Illinois, or the United States.
Its exemplification of an architectural type or style distinguished by innovation, rarity, uniqueness, or overall quality of design, detail, materials, or craftsmanship.
Its identification as the work of an architect, designer, engineer, or builder whose individual work is significant in the history or development of the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois, or the United States.

I. BACKGROUND

The formal landmark designation process for the Arch began on September 2,2021, when the Commission approved a preliminary landmark recommendation (the 'Trelirninary Recommendation") for the Arch as a Chicago Landmark. The Commission found that the Arch meets three (3) of the seven (7) criteria for designation, as well as the integrity criterion, identified in the Chicago Landmarks Ordinance (Municipal Code, Section 2-120-580 et seq.). As part of the Preliminary Recommendation, the Commission preliminarily identified the "significant historical and architectural features" of the Arch as:

• All elevations^ mcluding the roofline, ofthe Arch

Also, as part of the Preliminary Recommendation, the Commission adopted a Designation Report, dated September 2,2021, tie most current iteration of which is dated November 4,2021, incorporated herein and attached hereto as Exhibit A (the "Designation Report").

At its regular meeting of October 7,2021, the Commission received a report incorporated herein and attached hereto as Exhibit B (the "Department of Planning and Development Report") from Maurice D. Cox, Commissioner of the Department of Planning and Development, stating that the proposed landmark designation ofthe Arch supports the City's overall planning goals and is consistent with the City's governing policies and plans.

On October 22,2021, the Cornniission received written consent to landmark designation of the Arch in a form dated October 22,2021, and signed by Commissioner Gia Biagi, City of Chicago Department of Transportation, representing the owner of the Arch (the City of Chicago).


H. FINDINGS OF THE COMMISSION ON CHICAGO LANDMARKS

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 2-120-690 of the Municipal Code, the Commission has reviewed the entire record of proceedings on the proposed Chicago Landmark designation, including the Designation Report and all of the ^formation on the proposed landmark designation of the Arch; and
WHEREAS, with its Bienvenidos a Little Village sign, the Arch exemplifies the cultural and social heritage of the Mexican community in Chicago in general and the neighborhood of Little Village specifically; and
WHEREAS, the Arch spans West 26th Street a commercial street with significant economic heritage as it has served waves of immigrant residents over time including Europeans and Mexicans. Though many of the buildings on West 26th Street were built prior to the community becoming Mexican, the community has added and preserved its own significant layer of culture to West 26m Street through language, food, religion, family structure, murals, music and dance; and
WHEREAS, the Arch is unique in Chicago as the only example of a street gateway inspired by historic gateways built at Mexican religious sites, haciendas and walled towns in the Colonial era. It may be the only such example north of the Rio Grande River; and
WHEREAS, with its clay tile roof, stucco towers with domed roofs, and tiled span, the Arch exhibits materials and design details that are typically found in Mexico and conveys the living heritage of the community in Little Village; and
WHEREAS, Mexican-American artist and architect Adrian Lozano holds the distinction of being involved in the design of three buildings in Chicago treasured by the Mexican


|1010|community: the Little Village Arch, the National Museum of Mexican Art and Benito Juarez Community Academy; and

WHEREAS, in 1941 Lozano painted the Progress of Mexico, a mural inside the Benito Juarez Club room " at Hull House. Though the work no longer survives, it is significant as the . first manifestation of the Mexican Muralism Movement in Chicago, a Movement that continues to thrive in the city.

WHEREAS, the Arch meets three (3) criteria for landmark designation set forth in Section 2-120-620 (1), (4) and (5) ofthe Municipal Code; and
WHEREAS, consistent with Section 2-120-630 ofthe Municipal Code, the Arch has significant historic, community, architectural, or aesthetic interest or value, the integrity of which is preserved in light of its location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, and ability to express such historic, community, arcWtectural, or aesthetic interest or value; now, therefore,


THE COMMISSION ON CHICAGO LANDMARKS HEREBY:
Adopts the recitals, findings and statements of fact set forth in the preamble and Sections I and II hereof as the findings of the Commission; and
Adopts the Designation Report, as revised, and dated this November 4, 2021; and
Finds, based on the Designation Report and the entire record before the Commission, that the Arch meets the three (3) criteria for landmark designation set forth in Section 2-120-620 (1), (4) and (5) of the Municipal Code; and
Finds that the Arch satisfies the "integrity" requirement set forth in Section 2-120-630 of the Municipal Code; and
Finds that the significant historical and architectural features ofthe Arch arc identified, as
follows:
• All elevations, including the roofline, of the Arch

6. Recommends the designation of the Arch a Chicago Landmark.
This recommendation was adopted JUisvX/asrU^r^^ C 8 -O




Dated:



|1010|EXHIBIT A

LANDMARK DESIGNATION REPORT






Little Village Arch
3100 W. 26th Street

Final Landmark Recommendation Adopted by the Commission on Chicago Landmarks, on November 4, 2021



CONTENTS
Map|910|The Little Village I La Villita Neighborhood|910|Design and Construction of the Little Village Arch 10
Adrian Lozano, Artist and Architect 13
Criteria For Designation 15
Significant Historical and Architectural Features 16

Selected Bibliography
LITTLE VILLAGE ARCH
3100 West 26th Street Built: 1990
Architect: Adrian Lozano
Standing proudly above West 26th Street is the Little Village Arch, which serves as the eastern gateway to what has been referred to as the "Mexican capital of the Midwest." The two-story tall tiled archway spanning 26th Street is carried by dome-capped stucco towers at either end, with sidewalk passageways below. The arch is inset with a wrought-iron grille with a metal banner that reads "Bienvenidos A Little Village." Above, the arch is faced on both sides with orange mosaic tile set in a diamond pattern and is capped by a clay tile roof. At the arch's center is a grand mechanical clock.|1010|In 2019, the Commission on Chicago Landmarks highlighted the Little Village Arch as part of the Community Slreetscape Markers: Context Statement. The Context Statement recognized the cultural significance of this type of public improvement and laid out the criteria necessary for such types of installations to be designated Chicago landmarks.


The Little Village Arch is located in the 3100 block of West 26th Street, between S. Albany Street and S. Troy Street, in the South Lawndale Community Area, as represented in black on the map above.
The Little Village / La Villita Neighborhood
Little Village is known for the cultural footprints left behind by waves of immigrants. Located just west of the intersection of S. Albany Avenue and West 26th Street, the Little Village Arch is the gateway to the Mexican and Mexican American community of Little Village, or La Villita. The neighborhood is located 5 miles southwest ofthe Loop in the larger South Lawndale Com­munity Area, a wedge-shaped geographic area situated between the Stevenson Expressway at its southern limits and stretching roughly along Cermak Road to the north, with Western Avenue and Cicero at its east to west. The perimeter of South Lawndale is defined by industrial, rail and the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal which surround an island of residential blocks.
The Little Village Arch marks the beginning of a two-mile stretch of West 26th Street which runs west from the Arch to Kostner Avenue. This part of West 26th Street is the commercial and cultural heart of Little Village with a dense strip of small shops, bakeries, restaurants and offices run by and catering to the Mexican community. Though many of the buildings on West 26th Street were built prior to the neighborhood becoming Latino, the Arch identifies the living herit­age and culture of the community. On top of caring for the historic neighborhood of Little Vil­lage, the community has added and preserved its own significant layer of culture and traditions in the neighborhood through language, food, religion, family structure, murals, music and dance.



|1010|The land that is now Little Village was familiar to generations of indigenous Americans who traversed the area. It was here that Native Americans discovered a low and short portage of land connecting the Great Lakes and Mississippi river systems. The Chicago Portage as it came to be known attracted the attention Marquette and Joliet in 1673, early European explorers into North America who perceived the economic and strategic importance of a connection between the Great Lakes and Mississippi river systems that ultimately gave rise to. the City of Chicago. As the city developed, the route of the Chicago Portage has evolved into an industrial and transpor­tation corridor containing the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, major railroads, and the Steven­son Expressway.
European settlement in the area began in 1862 with the arrival ofthe Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad. In 1871, Alden C. Millard and Edwin J. Decker, real estate partners from Chi­cago, began subdividing undeveloped land for a residential development they named Lawndale (an appellation which survives in the names of the North and South Lawndale Community are­as). Bound by West Cermak Road, West 26th Street, South Hamlin Avenue and South Homan Avenue, the subdivision offered reasonably priced land that was still near enough to Chicago's Loop to be reached by the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad within 20 minutes. Lawndale also comprised a park located near West Cermak Road and South Millard Avenue, which served as an appealing feature for prospective residents. Today, this recreational area is



i«»f 'V",



Illl&ii




At left is an 1870s advertisement for lots for sale in the newly established subdivision of Lawndale, which was created,by the real estate firm of Millard & Decker just west of Douglas Park. (Credit: Images of America, Chicago's Little Village, Lawndale-Crawford)
V













|1010|

An early 1900s postcard view of West 26th Street between Trumbull and St. Louis Avenues.
(Credit: Images of America, Chicago's Little Village, Lawndale-Crawford)

known as Shedd Park. Millard and Decker's venture failed in 1876, however it set the stage for future residential development in South Lawndale.
Industry has played an important role in South Lawndale's history. After the Great Fire of 1871, which did not reach South Lawndale, industry and commerce began to thrive as large manufac­turing complexes moved into the area, subsequently encouraging residential development. The construction of the McCormick Reaper plant at 27th and Western in 1873, and Western Electric Company's Hawthorne Works in nearby Cicero in 1905, offered jobs that attracted ethnic Euro­pean working-class families to settle in the area beginning in the 1880s.
Throughout the first two decades of the 20th century, South Lawndale developed rapidly as a working-class community with a strong Czech and Slovak ethnic identity such that the neigh­borhood became known as Czech California. Many came to Little Village from Pilsen in search of better housing in a less-congested neighborhood. Most families resided in two- and three-flats. By the 1920s, the neighborhood was completely built up and the Czech community was joined by Poles, Croatians, Slovenes and Lithuanians. The 1920s also saw the complete devel­opment of West 26th Street as a neighborhood commercial strip that has served successive waves of ethnic communities.
Known as racial or ethnic succession by sociologists, most neighborhoods in Chicago have evolved over time as new social groups replaced older ones. South Lawndale is no exception. Mexicans had been migrating to Chicago since the early twentieth century to escape the unrest of the Mexican Revolution and to seek jobs in the nation's industrial capital. They initially set­tled near places of work: in the Back of the Yards neighborhood which housed workers in the meatpacking industry and in South Chicago with its proximity to the steel industry. Mexicans began arriving in South Lawndale as early as the 1940s
At the same time, African Americans began to move into North Lawndale prompting "white flight" and rapid racial turnover by the 1960s. European ethnic business owners in South Lawndale, led by real estate broker Richard Dolejs, proposed renaming the neighborhood "Little Village" in 1964 to distinguish the European ethnic community from the African Ameri­can community in North Lawndale. Dolejs also promoted plans to redecorate storefronts on West 26th Street in a vaguely Central European style though little of this was implemented. However, the name Little Village did take hold as did the racial boundary between North and South Lawndale.
The ethnic rebranding of Little Village failed to stem white flight. In the 1960s the neighbor­hood population was in transition as families of European descent moved out to suburban Cice­ro, Berwyn and Riverside and new Mexican residents moved in in a wave of immigration from Mexico from the 1960s to the 1980s. Little Village offered the Mexican community the same benefits enjoyed by earlier European immigrants: affordable housing and a walkable, self-contained community.
Many of the Mexicans who came to Little Village in 1960s were either displaced from their homes in other parts of the city, such as the Near West Side where large swaths were cleared by urban renewal programs and the University of Illinois Circle Campus. Others were new immi­grants for whom Little Village and Pilsen have served as points of entry from Mexico to Chica­go and the Midwest. The influx of Mexican immigrants reversed population decline in Little Village between 1960 and 1980 and revived its commerce and retail base, particularly on West 26th Street. Today Little Village is 84% Latino (of which 77% Mexican/Mexican American), 12% African American and 3.9% foreign born.
West 26th Street, once referred to as "Bohemian Broadway" and now known as Calle Mexico, is claimed to be the second highest grossing retail sales district in the City of Chicago next to


|1010|Community leaders Richard Dolejs, Dominic Rossi and Mr. Dancho displaying a new Little Village light pole sign in 1965, part of an ill-timed effort to maintain the neighborhood's European ethnic identity. (Credit: Images of America, Chicago's Little Village, Lawndale-Crawford)
Richard Dolejs welcoming a new bakery business at 3648 W. 26th Street incorporating the Little Vil­lage name, date unknown. (Credit: Images of America, Chicago's Little Village, Lawndale-Crawford)



Michigan Avenue.
At a vacated section of Kolin Avenue, West 26th Street includes a plaza with a memorial to Manuel Perez Jr., a Mexican-American raised in Little Village and a World War II hero who was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his actions in the Battle of Luzon, Philippine Islands, in February 1945, a month before he was killed in action.
With its many murals, parades and festivals, and the Bienvenidos a Little Village sign on the imposing Arch, Little Village is a center of Mexican culture and community in Chicago and the United States, second in size only to the Mexican community in East Los Angeles.

Design and Construction of the Little Village Arch
At least as early as 1987, the idea of a celebratory community marker to highlight the growing Mexican population of the neighborhood was proposed. The initial idea consisted of twin iron gates at the eastern and western ends of Little Village's vibrant 26th Street retail corridor; however, then-alderman Jesus "Chuy" Garcia proposed a design inspired by the arched en­trances found in Mexican architecture. It was intended by the City to build community pride and recognize the significance of the Mexican-American community to Chicago.
Construction of the arch was begun in late 1990 and was built over a period of six months by dr/Balti Contracting Company, which used scaffolding to prevent interruption to traffic. In 1991, then President of Mexico, Carlos Salinas de Gortari, visited Chicago and stopped to speak to a rally of around two thousand Little Village residents near the newly completed arch. Salinas reassured the crowd that the Mexican government had not forgotten them and they were not alone. "As president of Mexico, it's very emotional for me to be here with you in Little Village, in the barrio with the Mexican people surrounded by Mexican flags and proud, honest hard-working people," he said. As a gift to the community and the City, Salinas presented a bronze clock manufactured by Relojes Centenario, the oldest clockmaker in Mexi­co. It was installed in the crown of the arch, with faces on both the east and west sides.
The Little Village Arch resembles the arched entrances found in Mexican architecture. The arched gateway is a distinctive feature of the capilla abierta or "open chapel" built in Mexico during the Colonial era in the early 16th century. These were built by Catholic missionaries to hold mass for large numbers of indigenous people and they were similar to the teocallis or sa­cred precincts of pre-Hispanic temples. Arched gateways are also found in Mexican towns that were fortified with walled enclosures. Here the gateway controlled access to streets lead­ing in and out of the walled settlement. While no longer serving as a control point, these gate­ways survive in Mexico and are a distinct feature of towns and cities. Similar arched gateways are found in Mexican haciendas, large estates dedicated to farming or manufacturing.















10




11


12
Adrian Lozano, Artist and Architect
The Little Village Arch was designed by Adrian Lozano (1921-2014), a Chicago artist and ar­chitect of Mexican descent whose career has not been well documented. Despite the lack of documentation, it is known that in addition to the Arch, Lozano contributed to two other build­ings important to the Mexican community in Chicago: the National Museum of Mexican Art (1978, 2001 and 2006) and the Benito Juarez Community Academy (1977), both in Pilsen.
Lozano was born in Aguascalientes, Mexico and came to Chicago at age four with his parents. His family appears to have lived in the Mexican community on the Near West Side before neighborhood residents were displaced by urban renewal programs that include the construc­tion of the University of Illinois' Circle Campus. The young Lozano was active at Hull House and at age 20 painted the Progress of Mexico, a 1941 mural inside the Benito Juarez Club room at Hull House. Lozano depicted himself in scenes from Mexican history. The mural was de­stroyed during the late 1960s with the expansion of the Circle Campus. Though it does not sur­vive, the mural holds the distinction of being the first work of Mexican Muralism in Chicago, a community based art tradition that continues to thrive in the city.
Lozano earned a diploma from Wright College and taught fine arts there in the 1940s. In 1942 his work was exhibited at the Benedict Gallery of Hull House and in 1957 Lozano's work was exhibited at the Art Institute of Chicago.
It is unknown when Lozano entered architecture or where he studied. His first documented work of architecture was the 1978 adaptive re-use of a Chicago Park District boathouse into the National Museum of Mexican Art, with later additions designed by him in 2001 and 2006. The facade of the museum features a frieze with pre-Columbian motifs from the archaeological Za-potec site at Mitla, Mexico.


In 1977, as part of Bernheim, Kahn & Lozano, Lozano served as the architect of record for the Benito Juarez Community Academy, which was designed in consultation with Mexican archi­tect Pedro Ramirez Vazquez. The massing of the building and its sloped walls evokes pre-Hispanic temples and the design stands as the only example of Neo-aztecismo architecture in Chicago. The exterior also includes a prominent frame for a 1979 mural entitled La Esperanza depicting the struggles faced by Mexican-American youth by Malu Ortega y Alberro, Jimmy Longoria, Oscar Moya, Marcos Raya, Robert Valadez, and Salvador Vega.

Progress of Mexico, a mural painted by Adrian Lozano in 1941 which was located in the Benito Juarez Club Room on the Second Floor within Hull-House. (Credit: Pofs of Promise)




13



14
CRITERIA FOR DESGINATION

According to the Municipal Code of Chicago (Sections 2-120-690), the Commission on Chica­go Landmarks has the authority to make a recommendation of landmark designation for an area, district, place, building, structure, work of art or other object with the City of Chicago if the Commission determines it meets two or more of the stated "criteria for designation," as well as possesses a significant degree of historic integrity to convey its significance.
The following should be considered by the Commission on Chicago Landmarks in determining whether to recommend that the Little Village Arch be designated as a Chicago Landmark.
Criterion 1: Critical Part of City's Heritage
Its value as an example of the architectural, cultural, economic, historical, social, or other as­pect of the heritage of the City of Chicago, State of Illinois, or the United States.
With its Bienvenidos a Little Village sign, the Little Village Arch exemplifies the cultural and social heritage of the Mexican community in Chicago in general and the neighborhood of Little Village specifically.
The Little Village Arch spans West 26th Street, a commercial street with significant eco­nomic heritage as it has served waves of immigrant residents over time including Europeans and Mexicans. Though many of the buildings on West 26th Street were built prior to the community becoming Mexican, the community has added and preserved its own significant layer of culture to West 26th Street through language, food, religion, family structure, mu­rals, music and dance

Criterion 4: Important Architecture
Its exemplification of an architectural type or style distinguished by innovation, rarity, unique­ness, or overall quality of design, detail, materials, or craftsmanship.
The Little Village Arch is unique in Chicago as the only example of a street gateway in­spired by historic gateways built at Mexican religious sites, haciendas and walled towns in the Colonial era. It may be the only such example north of the Rio Grande River.
With its clay tile roof, stucco towers with domed roofs, and tiled span, the Little Village Arch exhibits materials and design details that are typically found in Mexico and conveys the living heritage of the community in Little Village.

Criterion 5: Important Architect
Its identification as the work of an architect, designer, engineer, or builder whose individual work is significant in the history or develop-ment of the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois, or the United States.
Mexican-American artist and architect Adrian Lozano holds the distinction of being in­volved in the design of three buildings in Chicago treasured by the Mexican community: the Little Village Arch, the National Museum of Mexican Art and Benito Juarez Community Academy.
In 1941 Lozano painted the Progress of Mexico, a mural inside the Benito Juarez Club room



15
at Hull House. Though the work no longer survives, it is significant as the first manifesta­tion ofthe Mexican Muralism Movement in Chicago, a Movement that continues to thrive in the city.

The Little Village Arch also meets the additional requirements for designation outlined in the Community Streetscape Markers Context Statement adopted by the Commission on March 7, 2019, which state the following:
The design ofthe marker must employ the use of symbolism or imagery that is significant and/or reflects a certain social, ethnic, or cultural group. The work does not only recognize a geographic place within the city (street, neighborhood, or community area).
The community marker must be visible from the public-right-of-way.
The marker is a work of original art and/or architecture designed by an artist or architect. It is not a stock piece, or an element comprised of prefabricated components.

Integrity
The integrity of the proposed landmark must be preserved in light of its location, design, set­ting, materials, workmanship and ability to express its historic community, architecture or aes­thetic value.

The Little Village Arch possesses a high degree of integrity. It remains in its original location and the neighborhood commercial street setting has changed little since it was built. In 2012, the arch was repaired and painted. Missing roof tiles were replaced, and the reddish granite base was replaced with limestone. The clock was repaired by a technician from the Relojes Ccntario factory in 2013. Over three decades the Little Village Arch has continued to convey its historic community and aesthetic values.

Significant Historical and Architectural Features
Whenever a building, structure, object, or district is under consideration for landmark designa­tion, the Commission on Chicago Landmarks is required to identify the "significant historical and architectural features" of the property. This is done to enable the owners and the public to understand which elements are considered the most important to preserve the historical and ar­chitectural character of the proposed landmark.

Based upon its evaluation of the Little Village Arch, the Commission staff recommends that the significant features be identified as:
All elevations, including the roofline, of the Arch.












16
Selected Bibliography
Badillo, David A. "Mexican immigrants, Hull-House, and the Church." in Pots of Promise: Mexicans and Pottery at Hull-House, 1920-40, Cheryl R. Ganz and Margaret Strobel Eds. Chicago: University of Illinois, 2004.
Centra de Estudios Chicahos e Investigaciones Sociales, Jim Faught, Estevan T. Flores, and Gilberto Cardenas. A Profile of the Spanish Language Population in the Little Village and Pilsen Community Areas of Chicago, Illinois and Population Projections, 1970-1980; Jim Faught, Estevan Flores, Research Associates ; Gilberto Cardenas, Project Di­rector. Chicago: Chicano Mental Health Training Program, 1975.
Chicago Fact Book Consortium. Local Community Fact Book: Chicago Metropolitan Area : Based on the 1990 Census. Chicago, 111: University of Illinois at Chicago, 1995.
Chicago (111.), and Commission on Chicago Landmarks. Community Streetscape Markers: Con­text Statement: 2019.
Chicago (111.), and Commission on Chicago Landmarks. Pilsen Historic District. 2019.
D'Amato, Paul, and Stuart Dybek. Barrio: Photographs from Chicago's Pilsen and Little Vil­lage. 2006.
Hemmens, George, Charles Hoch, RoJean Madsen, and Wim Weiwel. Households' Needs and Community Response in Three Chicago Neighborhoods. Chicago, 111: University of Illi­nois at Chicago School of Urban Planning and Policy, 1985.
Jirasek, Rita Arias, and Carlos Tortolero. Mexican Chicago. Charleston, SC: Arcadia, 2001.
Levick, Melba, and Gina Hyams. Mexicasa: The Enchanting Inns and Haciendas of Mexico. San Francisco, Calif: Chronicle, 2002.
Lira Vasquez, Carlos. Para una historia de la arquitectura mexicana. Mexico, D.F.: Univer-sidad Autonoma Metropolitana Azcapotzalco, 1990.
Magallon, Frank S. Images of America, Chicago's Little Village, Lawndale-Crawford. Charles­ton SC, Chicago IL, Portsmouth NH and San Francisco CA: Arcadia Publishing, 2010.
Reiff, Janice L., Ann Durkin Keating, and James R. Grossman. Encyclopedia of Chicago. 2005
Salas Portugal, Armando, Carlos Montemayor, Olga Peralta de Salas Portugal, and Carmen Tostado. Armando Salas Portugal. Barcelona: Lunwerg Editores, 2005.
Segurajauregui, Elena. Arquitecturaporfirisia: la Colonia Juarez. Mixcoac, Mexico: Tilde, 1991.
Sinkevitch, Alice, Laurie McGovern Petersen, Perry Duis, and Geoffrey Baer. AIA guide to Chicago. 2014.
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico. Cuadernos de arquitectura virreinal 14: Yucatan. [Mexico, D.F.]: Facultad de Arquitectura, UNAM, 1985. .





17
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
CITY OF CHICAGO
Lori E. Lightfoot, Mayor
Department of Planning and Development
Maurice D. Cox, Commissioner
Kathleen Dickhut, Deputy Commissioner, Bureau of Citywide Systems and Historic Preserva­tion
Project Staff
Daniel Klaiber, Project Manager
Matt Crawford, research, writing, and layout

DPD would like to thank Patrick Pyszka, Principal Photographer, City of Chicago Department of Assets, Information and Services for the professional photography featured in this report.
The Commission on Chicago Landmarks, whose nine members are appointed by the Mayor and City Council, was established in 1968 by city ordinance. The Commission is responsible for recommending to the City Council that individual building, sites, objects, or entire districts be designated as Chicago Landmarks, which protects them by law. The Commission is staffed by the Chicago Department of Planning and Development; Bureau of Citywide Systems, Sustaina-bility and Historic Preservation, City Hall, 121 North LaSalle Street, Room 905, Chicago, IL 60602; (312-744-3200)phone; web site: hist.html


This Landmark Designation Report is subject to possible revision and amendment dur­ing the designation process. Only language contained within a designation ordinance adopted by the City Council should be regarded as final.







































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COMMISSION ON CHICAGO LANDMARKS

Ernest C. Wong, Chair
Gabriel Ignacio Dziekiewicz, Vice-Chair
Maurice D. Cox, Secretary
Suellen Burns
Tiara Hughes
Lynn Osmond
Alicia Ponce
Richard Tolliver
The Commission is staffed by the:

Department of Planning and Development





Department of Planning and Development
Bureau of Citywide Systems and Historic Preservation
City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle St., Room 905 Chicago, Illinois 60602 312.744.3200 (TEL)


September 2021, revised and reprinted Oc­tober 2021
Department of Planning and Development
. CITY OF CHICAGO



October 7, 2021

Report to the Commission on Chicago Landmarks On the Little Village Arch 3100 W. 26th Street


The Department of Planning and Development (DPD) finds that the proposed landmark designation of the Little Village Arch supports the City's overall planning goals for the surrounding Little Village area and is consistent with the City's governing policies and plans.
Standing proudly above West 26th Street, the Little Village Arch serves as the eastern gateway to what has been referred to as the "Mexican capital ofthe Midwest." Completed in 1990, the Arch was highlighted in 2019 by the Commission on Chicago Landmarks as part ofthe Community Streetscape Markers: Context Statement. The Context Statement recognized the cultural significance of this type of public improvement and laid out the criteria necessary for such types of installations to be designated Chicago landmarks.
The designation is the first one in the City of Chicago that is associated with Chicago's Latino community and it is consistent with the vision ofthe Little Village Quality of Life Plan which values family, culture and community. In addition, the designation will help to amplify the small business reinvestment projects underway along 26th Street, as part ofthe Neighborhood Opportunity Fund, including the Xquina Business Incubator which is being spearheaded by the Little Village Chamber of Commerce and will bring a new cafe, co-working/shared office space and a commercial kitchen to an historic commercial building at 26th Street and S. Drake Avenue.
To that end, DPD feels that the designation of the Little Village Arch as a Chicago landmark will help to further strengthen the bond between the people and the place of the Little Village
community.

Maurice D. Cox, Commissioner
Department of Planning and Development


121 NORTH LASALLE STREET, ROOM 1000; CHICAGO, ILLINOIS 60602