Monday, September 13, 2010

New Work Reveals Old Streets

Michael Carroll writes in:

"Thought the readership would like the heads up before Broadway is repaved - the original cobblestone street has been uncovered with the street resurfacing on Broadway, between Montrose and Wilson. It's only in select spots, but is still pretty neat to see."

Reminds us of what a pothole revealed of the old streetcar tracks on Clark a while back.  Thanks, Michael!


  1. Very cool. I had been hoping to catch a glimpse of that. Glad someone got a photo.

  2. Yep, I saw the old bricks when they first started doing the sidewalk and curb work in front of Schiller's office. I may have a photo of the cross section between asphalt on top and pavers underneath. Another great place to see the original cobblestones are in the alley south of Sunyside in between Sheridan and Broadway. That alley is very potholey and the 'stones are very nice looking. There's the occasional street or alley (several up north off the Morse stop and a large stretch east of the L just north of Lincoln) that is entirely cobblestone, and I gotta think that replacing a brick is easier and better than the half-assed throwing of hot fresh asphalt as pothole fill.


  3. Yeah i live on wayne street
    the last stretch of it where it hits morse, that is cobblestone
    and so is glenwood the west part of it by morse.

  4. Funny, now they want to tear out the concrete alleys and make them permiable for rain water. What goes around comes around.

  5. I'd really love to have one of these stones as a piece of Chicago and Uptown's history. Anyone know if any are loose or easy to get up?

  6. It's funny to hear everyone calling them "cobblestone" streets, as if they were in some quaint European city. Those are bricks, not cobblestone. I don't think there are any cobblestone streets in the Midwest.

  7. The pavers on Glenwood and Wayne are of a later period: they're red brick and pretty standardized--these older more variable bricks date back further (lots of RP streets weren't paved till well into the 1910s).

    For a history of Chicago Street paving, check out

  8. @ uptown revivalist - actually, they're "belgian block" pavers (rectangular shaped stones) ... not bricks or cobble.

    if we only had milder winters in chicago we could still utilise these to pave our streets ...

  9. cobblestone is a euphemism,

    what should we call it, brick paver road or belgian brick paver roads? then people will just look at us like either nerds or that we are full of it.

    i think alot of people know its not actually cobblestone, and even if they didnt they know in general what you are talking about,

    there are some cobblestone streets in america, atleast according to wikipedia.

  10. We had cobblestones in Memphis. Came over on coffin ships...they are mostly paved over now as well. Sigh.