More Places to See Before You Die

By Justin Sondak in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 22, 2007 8:35PM

Last night, the American Institute of Architects’ Illinois chapter announced their “150 Greatest Places in Illinois.” And no, your bedroom’s not on the list.

schurzhs.gifCommemorating 150 years of highlighting our state’s “built environment,” the AIAIL 150 is a what’s-what of places historically significant, uniquely designed, or really frickin’ cool. Chicagoland’s dominion extends beyond safe, popular choices like Wrigley Field, Sears Tower and Navy Pier to include the northwest side’s Schurz High School (a Prairie School school) and Evanston’s Grosse Point Lighthouse. They like Wicker Park—your grandparents’ hood, not the renovated one—and gawk like tourists over the Loop and Michigan Avenue.

Those who’d like to be informed and opinionated about the beautiful sites without leaving their home, office, or home office should head over to the shiny new Illinois Great Places website, where you can search all places by geography, era, and architect. Here we learned that Illinois is home to the largest prehistoric Native American site in the U.S., that Park Forest is America’s ultimate suburb, and Peoria’s City Hall is actually notable.