The Housing Issue

A look at the residential landscape of our city hints at questions asked and answered many times over: questions of who belongs where, how they should be able to live, what pieces of our built history should be saved, and how we should remember what’s gone. In this, the Weekly’s 2015 Housing Issue, we tackle the idea of home from multiple angles. We look at the eta Creative Arts Foundation’s search for a stable space and the ongoing problem of unaffordable housing, dorm life at La Casa and youth homelessness on the South Side. The short histories scattered throughout these pages offer six different perspectives on Chicago’s homes—how they’ve been made and lost, occupied and abandoned. We filled the first half of this issue with stories of homes (and lack thereof) that we think are important, but we know there are more.

Have thoughts to add on South Side housing? Send submissions, story ideas, comments, and questions to

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A Hole in the World In a social service desert, activists and policymakers begin to make a space for the South Side’s homeless youth
Renewing the RosenwaldInside the history of Chicago’s oldest new housing development
Unaffordable and Unattainable Adding up Chicago’s housing crisis
Revisiting Auburn ParkParks, plats, and the shape of the South Side
More than a DormLa Casa Student Housing acts as a support system for students and community
It Takes a Tennis Village During redevelopment, uncertainties persist about the use of former public housing land
Grit and Glory Amid renovations, the eta Creative Arts Foundation remembers its structural history
Know Your Rights and Resources, Pt 1 Resources available to Chicago homeowners
Know Your Rights and Resources, Pt 2 An overview of renters’ rights in Chicago
Home Histories → Robert Taylor Homes, Ben Hecht’s house, Pullman Historic District, Clara’s House, Woodlawn Park, Muddy Waters’s house

Cover art by Ellie Mejia.
Read the full PDF online here.