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History – Page 2 – The Babuk Report

Category: History

  • It’s Biggar than LinkedIn

    Suddenly, my interest in the abandoned railway roundhouse in Hanna, Alberta and electronic social media meet.  Kind of. I’m helping the effort to restore the Hanna Roundhouse by donating a slideshow exhibit production describing the history roundhouses.  It’s all being produced through a part of my practice called Babuk Presentations, or for the 21st Century, www.learnaboutchicago.com […]

  • The Hanna Roundhouse, and Memories from One’s Past

    Many years ago, having just arrived in Washington, DC for my tenure but realizing that I was a long ways from home; an issue of the Minnesota Architect crossed my desk.  The feature story was a photo essay about wooden grain elevators; the front cover photograph was of the “nine in a line” grain elevators […]

  • If Buildings Could Walk…

    A previous post described “if walls could talk”, but what about if buildings could walk? It’s not that far fetched an idea.  Taking cues from the railroad industry, it wasn’t uncommon at the turn of the 20th century to find fixed structures – buildings – with large moving parts.  Bridges were prime examples.  It took […]

  • The Single Level Largesse

    In a quest to directly avoid any specifically Olympics related topics today… Recently, the Oak Park YMCA recently announced cancellation of its plans to move from its older, multi level facility in the middle of Oak Park, to a sprawling single level facility in a nearby town.  Fundraising in this economic environment wasn’t going as […]

  • Architecture in Motion

    A colleague described a project in Atlanta years ago.  It was a building sited off of an expressway.  Although the building was envisioned to have the typical sort of menu of architectural experiences – approach, enter, inhabit – it was noted that most people would experience this building differently.  Most would experience this building while […]

  • Architecture as a Machine

    Many early-modern architectural theoreticians were impressed by inventions of the machine age.  Some, like French Architect Le Corbusier, promoted the concept of architecture as a “machine for living”.  Still others, like Mies van der Rohe, spoke of the ‘machine aesthetic”. From that same historical period, one may find many examples of “architecture as a machine” […]

  • A Vacant Building in Chicago

    In writing about vacant buildings and storefronts in Oak Park, one would think that I’ve neglected to mention vacancies in Chicago.  Whenever I show friends the Crown Fountain at Millennium Park, they always ask about a darkened Venetian Gothic building across Michigan Avenue.  It’s the former Chicago Athletic Association; opened in 1894, architect Henry Ives […]

  • A Tale of Two Cities – the Skyscraper and the Suburb

    The Frank Lloyd Wright Studio in Oak Park Oak Park, Illinois is known throughout the world for its revolutionary architecture that defined the American suburb.  From his Oak Park studio on Chicago Avenue, Frank Lloyd Wright and his entourage created the suburban home format on a basic grid-iron layout of streets; they developed an entirely new […]

  • A Courtyard Alley in Chicago’s Loop

    In the hunt for more unknown spots in Chicago; one such place covered during my “Secret Streets” presentation during Great Chicago Places and Spaces this year was 22 East Jackson Boulevard.  At one time, it was better known as “Pickwick Place”. Historical View, Pickwick Place (image from Dennis McClendon) While seemingly a public right-of-way, Pickwick […]

  • Manitobans and Modernists from both parts of the Twentieth Century

    The University of Manitoba Faculty of Architecture has held an annual Chicago Field Trip for a very long time.  I’ve heard first hand accounts of the field trips that occurred during the 1940’s; I gather that they’ve been going on prior to that.  For the past couple years, I’ve been honoured to have made presentations […]