2018 Merit Award
Lakeview Chamber of Commerce and The Chicago Transit Authority
In Spring 2017, PORT was awarded the commission by the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce (SSA #27) to establish design guidelines, alignments, key nodes and a long-term strategy for the Lakeview Low-Line project. The Low-Line is an underutilized right-of-way and CTA maintenance vehicle route under the CTA Brown Line elevated train tracks that is informally used by the neighboring community. The long-term Low-Line project will transform this space into a continuous, half-mile long art walk and garden beneath the CTA ‘L’ tracks, allowing it to become a new community amenity and unique connector between the Lincoln Ave. and Southport commercial corridors.
The first phase of the project was completed in the summer of 2018, which was primarily focused on the Paulina Plaza as the west anchor of the Low-Line. The Paulina Plaza called for a new take on public furnishing that takes into account the need for an overhead cover, sound mitigation, additional lighting, and seating and vending. Taking formal cues from the track structure itself, we developed a collection of custom urban furniture with Landscape Forms Studio 431. These bright yellow rectangular boxes are a playful take on a vendor booth, a picnic table, a wavy bench, and a leaning wall. To further distinguish the space, we took advantage of the existing CTA lighting/debris canopy to introduce a bright yellow gateway ribbon, signage and scalloped light diffuser. Murals by artists Yollocalli and Lauren Asta transform the walls of the two adjacent buildings, framing each side of the plaza.