Selling a 6100 Square Foot Mansion in Bridgeport: 444 W. 38th

Jul 14 • Bridgeport, Single family homes • 549 Views • 81 Comments

This 5-bedroom brick single family home at 444 W. 38th in Bridgeport is just a few blocks away from U.S. Cellular Field.

It looks, from public records, like the house was built in 2008 and sold in 2009.

The brick house is on a double lot of 50×125 and has a rare Chicago feature: a 3 car heated attached garage.

5,000 of the 6,100 square feet is above grade and it has a full, finished basement.

All 5 bedrooms are on the second floor. The master bedroom is a huge 28×20.

The listing says the kitchen has “top of the line” finishes.

There is a unique 3-season separate porch house in the backyard and a third floor deck with views of The Cell.

Timothy White at Re/Max Vision 212 has the listing. See the pictures and the virtual tour here.

(The listing gives the address as 440 W. 38th but all the public records call it 444 W. 38th).

444 W. 38th Street: 5 bedrooms, 5.5 baths, 3 car garage, 6100 square feet

  • Sold in November 2009 for $950,000 (according to the Tribune’s records)
  • Currently listed for $1.2 million
  • Taxes of $6921
  • Central Air
  • Bedroom #1: 28×20
  • Bedroom #2: 15×12
  • Bedroom #3: 15×13
  • Bedroom #4: 15×13
  • Bedroom #5: 15×13

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81 Responses to Selling a 6100 Square Foot Mansion in Bridgeport: 444 W. 38th

  1. clio says:

    Beautiful house!!! If you are from this neighborhood and like it, this seems like a great place to live. Of course, I wouldn’t live in that area even if the house was free – while I think the immediate 1-2 block area is OK, there are not many places outside that zone in which I would feel safe or comfortable!

  2. Ed says:

    A house designed for interior spaces/current trends with no curb appeal/clunky. Too bad because someone spent some money.

  3. westloopelo says:

    On the one hand, it is a huge home with plenty of space. While I have to question the finishes and the overall completed look, many would take this place over a high floor condo in RN or Streeterville @ the same price point.
    On the other, judging from google map street view and my limited knowledge of the area (remember when I first moved here seeking rehabable units for resale, MANY RE agents strongly advised me to NEVER purchase anything south of Roosevelt) the location just does not make sense. I am thinking the builder was praying like mad the O Games landed in Chicago, at which point he would have made the asking price in rent for a month.
    Take this place and magically transport it to an upscale bedroom community, replace some of the finishes and appliances, and it might, just might, make sense.

  4. Sonies says:

    NOT a mansion

    its a mccrapbox!

  5. Tom (tfo) says:

    ahh Bridgeport…this developement is just one of many strenches of former industrial land that was redeveloped in the last decade. There are also scatered McMansion throughout the side streets.

    For the benefit of our NY transplants, allow me an annalogy. Manhatan is to GoldCoast as Jersey is to Bridgeport. That should sum it up.

    Suppossedly MTV is developing a Jersey-Shore-like show featuring Bridgeports finest overtanned, overgelled yout(h)s.

  6. ALT says:

    “NOT a mansion

    “its a mccrapbox!”

    Or a McMansion. Over A Billion Sold.

  7. Gary Lucido says:

    A long time ago my wife and I pondered living in Bridgeport because you get so much more for your money. We considered Bridgeport Village at that time. Recently we went back through the neighborhood to check it out. Although there are nice oases there, the surrounding area is just depressed industrial. You look out your front window and you see junk yards (essentially). I just wouldn’t feel good about living there – and not because of safety concerns. This particular block is just so close to the railroad track and the stadium.

    BTW, I lived in NJ for a while and the analogy is appropriate.

  8. jp3chicago says:

    The Cubs rooftop unit had a big hot tub overlooking Wrigley. It was pretty cool.
    Does this unit need a bulletproof railing for overlooking the cell? I think that it is still pretty cool!

    Both are nice units with good finishes but seem quite overpriced and will be very hard to sell. Perhaps they should just put up some flat screen TV’s, pretend that they are on Waveland or Sheffield, grill up some dogs & burgers, serve some cold beer and charge people $100 to “not watch” the game.

  9. homedelete says:

    Its like some local politically connected goof on the give got a little too flashy with his dirty money. Not that it is the case but why build this monstrosity in Bridgeport? Do his cronies and good old boys still live in the hood?

  10. valasko says:

    I think this might be one of the places that Bob wanted to buy.

    I usually refrain from making negative comments on neighborhoods, but I am not sure why anyone looking at this priceprice would want to live there.

  11. Groove77 says:

    “A house designed for interior spaces/current trends with no curb appeal/clunky”

    Ed well put, i miss the days of ornamented houses with large front porches that give you the feel and welcoming vibe. now its square “modern” boxes with no detail. the thing i hate the most is the suburban crap shacks that the street is greeted with a two car garage door, why did that idea ever become popular?

  12. Groove77 says:

    Question….i have always been curious about the basement garages, especially in chicago.
    how is drainage and flooding?
    how is it after a snow storm? can you drive up the incline?
    how about when the snow melts, does the melty slush slide down and pool up by the door?

  13. bjs says:

    Groove77 —

    A lot of the nice houses on Burling between willow and armitage have these garages. There are drains at the bottom and most of the nice places have heated driveways so it stays melted. That is burling though….no idea about this place.

  14. Tom (tfo) says:

    @Gary
    -Bridgeport Village is a disaster. The houses litterly are swaying in the wind due to the faulty engineering and construction. Basically they put huge windows on frmae constructions. I recall the developer ‘solving’ the problem by bracing neighboring house to each other for support.

    I think that the project went belly-up and phase 2 never started/finished. Lots of people got hosed there, more than your typical bubble buyer.

  15. Barry says:

    “the thing i hate the most is the suburban crap shacks that the street is greeted with a two car garage door, why did that idea ever become popular?”

    Pretty hard to put a garage in the back when you don’t have alleys

  16. Groove77 says:

    “Pretty hard to put a garage in the back when you don’t have alleys”

    Yes but pretty easy to recess it back on the drive way or have the garage entrance face 90 degrees from the street. it not like they are dealing with 25 foot wide lots Burbs have like 75×250+ lots.

    not having a alley shouldn’t mean your garage is 100 ft closer to the street than your front door?

  17. anon (tfo) says:

    “Pretty hard to put a garage in the back when you don’t have alleys”

    Why do people hate alleys? Answer is obvious when you’re talking multi-acre lots, but why did suburbanization do away with alleys in general?

  18. Chi-girl says:

    OT, but lenders are closing in on the NW side’s “castle”:

    http://www.chicagorealestatedaily.com/cgi-bin/news.pl?id=38862.

    Didn’t someone suggest earlier that it might be a good site for another Medieval Times location?

  19. Barry says:

    “Yes but pretty easy to recess it back on the drive way or have the garage entrance face 90 degrees from the street. it not like they are dealing with 25 foot wide lots Burbs have like 75×250+ lots.

    not having a alley shouldn’t mean your garage is 100 ft closer to the street than your front door?”

    Eh, most burbs don’t really have wide enough lots such that you can sacrifice a bunch of extra space on the side just so your garage isn’t front facing because it offends Groove’s delicate sensibilities. Additionally, find me one place where the garage door is 100′ closer than the front door.

    “Why do people hate alleys? Answer is obvious when you’re talking multi-acre lots, but why did suburbanization do away with alleys in general?”

    Because it’s really nice to actually have a good sized backyard that Junior and Rover can run around in and not have to worry about both the front and the back of your house backing up to public ways. I like alleys, but they’re kinda seedy even in the best of neighborhoods.

  20. Sonies says:

    because cul-de-sacs sound more sophisticated?

  21. anon (tfo) says:

    “[alleys]’re kinda seedy even in the best of neighborhoods.”

    Enh. Get rid of the overhead lines (unpossible, I know) and it’d dramatically improve any alley. I like my alley and have old-timer neighbors who hang out on the alley (yeah, in their garages, on lawn chairs, *not* watching someone fix a truck–just hanging out). I don’t think mine is seedy, but admit it’s a little ill-kept in places–mostly those who don’t use their garages regularly.

    But I *hate* the thought of rolling my trashcan down to the street-edge and/or keeping trashcans in front of my house/in my (attached) garage. And where else do you put all the crap that’s too crappy to take to salvation army but not quite trash?

  22. DZ says:

    Are alleys as common in other cities? I can’t really picture them nearly as much, in areas outside of downtowns.

  23. Question says:

    I love alleys. I particularly like it when people don’t have fences so you can see their gardens and backyards.

    Minneapolis and St. Paul have alleys (not the suburbs), but they don’t have as many scrappers and junkers looking for alley treasures. Thus, if you want something to disappear in 5 seconds there, you usually put it on the free section of CL.

  24. Groove77 says:

    “most burbs don’t really have wide enough lots such that you can sacrifice a bunch of extra space on the side just so your garage isn’t front facing because it offends Groove’s delicate sensibilities”

    no its the burb house needed to be built with a bathroom for each bedroom, a living room (front room for chicagoans), dining room, family room, a eat-in kitchen, a breakfast room and sun room. jeeze with all that no wonder they have no room to recess the garage back so its not protruding out.

    “Additionally, find me one place where the garage door is 100? closer than the front door.”

    yes that was an exaggeration on purpose!

    “I like alleys, but they’re kinda seedy even in the best of neighborhoods”

    i like the alley system, keeps the garbage away from me and i dont need to worry about “garbage day” and wheeling out the cans.

    also i guess you burbies dont have a beer fridge in your garage and hang out with the neighbor in anon’s lawn chair? (your missing out anon’s has a cup holder)

  25. Milkster says:

    Uh oh…i think i like McCrapboxes! Central air…walk in closet…patio furniture…is that backhouse in the last picture a GYM??? Sigh. I hate the location, but I’ve thought many times this summer about how nice it would be to live like normal people live in the rest of America!

  26. anon (tfo) says:

    “anon’s has a cup holder”

    TWO cupholders, my man. True urban luxury.

  27. Barry says:

    “But I *hate* the thought of rolling my trashcan down to the street-edge and/or keeping trashcans in front of my house/in my (attached) garage. And where else do you put all the crap that’s too crappy to take to salvation army but not quite trash?”

    We always kept it in the garage and then rolled it out to the curb the night before. Never bothered me, but maybe that’s just because it’s what I’m used to.

    Hell, at least it’s not the Manhattan system.

  28. Joe says:

    No alleys in Philly, that’s for sure. I’m amazed at the parking and garbage storage in Chicago that the alley’s provide. Virtually every house that I have seen on the North side has space for at least 2 parking spaces. Incredible. I’ll chalk it up as one of the few benefits of the city burning down back in the day.

  29. anon (tfo) says:

    “I’ve thought many times this summer about how nice it would be to live like normal people live in the rest of America!”

    Driving everywhere and having a fun night out at Applebee’s? Being one of the great unwashed mass that visits the city twice a year (for Taste and one other thing) b/c it’s “too scary”? Keeping your trashcan in your garage and forgetting to roll it out, so the festering stick permeates your house for an extra week?

    It’s all tradeoffs, my friend.

  30. Sonies says:

    Don’t forget the commuting… oh how I would loooooove that

    not

  31. Milkster says:

    Bahahahahaha! I’ll make a confession. My favorite restaurant is the Olive Garden because you always know what you’re gonna get and the portions are HUGE! Seriously. It’s much better than most Italian restaurants in NY. But there’s better Italian food in Chicago than NY.

    I would rather die than live in the burbs. But I live in a vintage building with only a window AC unit in the BR and it would be pure luxury not to sweat 2 minutes after getting out of the shower on those 100 degree days.

  32. Gary Lucido says:

    Tom,

    Yeah, I’ve heard about that. I believe that there is a group of homes though that did not have this problem. There are also code violations and some of the homes were built too close to the river. It’s a shame because it was a great idea and if the development were bigger then you wouldn’t feel like you lived in this tiny oasis.

    “-Bridgeport Village is a disaster. The houses litterly are swaying in the wind due to the faulty engineering and construction. Basically they put huge windows on frmae constructions. I recall the developer ’solving’ the problem by bracing neighboring house to each other for support.

    I think that the project went belly-up and phase 2 never started/finished. Lots of people got hosed there, more than your typical bubble buyer.”

  33. Sonies says:

    “Bahahahahaha! I’ll make a confession. My favorite restaurant is the Olive Garden because you always know what you’re gonna get and the portions are HUGE! Seriously.”

    I had a friend move from chicago(city) to the Cincinatti suburbs… he called me one day and said “dude, kill me… I just had a discussion with someone about how GOOD a restaurant the Olive Garden is”

  34. Milkster says:

    The Olive Garden at 22nd and Sixth Avenue in Manhattan always has a minimum 45 minute wait. 2.5 hours on Valentine’s or Mother’s Day! All the “real” Italian places are expensive and over-rated. Did you know The OG sends their chefs to train in Tuscany? They state it on the menu ;)

  35. Gary Lucido says:

    You know, I’ve lived in normal parts of the country (non-urban) and I live in the city now and I have to tell you I’d rather live in the suburbs. It’s not all Applebees and shopping malls. Life’s a lot simpler there and it’s the reason that so many people move to the suburbs once they have kids.

  36. Barry says:

    Yeah – Tuscany, NJ.

  37. Sonies says:

    Try the stuffed gnocci at Fiorentino’s sometime, you can’t get something like that at the Olive Garden!

  38. anon (tfo) says:

    “Did you know The OG sends their chefs to train in Tuscany?”

    At the Olive Garden in Tuscany.

    Of course, no one’s *ever* had a bad meal in Italy, right?

  39. homedelete says:

    If I’m going to live in the suburbs I want to live in that mid-century modern on two acres in Riverwoods.

    I don’t understand the appeal of moving all the way out to Algonquin or Huntley and living in a subdivision of townhomes stacked upon on another.

    Some of the closer suburbs with some character might be do able, like Elmhurst is pretty quaint, River Forest, Oak Park, possibly Evanston, La Grange, anywhere on the north shore…..

    i have friends in vernon hills, schaumburg, woodridge, rolling meadows and palatine and let’s just say that I don’t see them very often anymore.

  40. anon (tfo) says:

    “I’d rather live in the suburbs. It’s not all Applebees and shopping malls. Life’s a lot simpler there”

    It’s always simpler when you can segment yourself into a community of like-minded people. Which most suburbs are to a much greater degree than Chicago (or most any *big* city). But I find my day-to-day and month-to-month existence pretty simple in the city, anyway, at least as it relates to where I live. High school *will* be an issue, but that’s for future-me.

    I’d *seriously* consider moving *right now* to OP/RF or Evanston or a NT burb* if they were in another county. But for life to be genuinely simpler in metro-Chicago, one needs to get out of Cook County, too.

    *Speaking of which, did Joe-Z actually not come back this time?

  41. Sonies says:

    If i’m gonna live in the burbs, its going to be someplace warm at least… the hell with Chicago winters AND vanilla boredom

  42. OLd Man says:

    Interesting; people bumrapping the burbs AND Bridgeport. But then this is a forum where some people don’t think 4300 N. Wolcott is “the city”.

  43. Groove77 says:

    “only a window AC unit in the BR and it would be pure luxury not to sweat 2 minutes after getting out of the shower on those 100 degree days”

    one tip, CEILING FANS!!!!
    skip the bedroom ac unit if your floor plan is good and put it in the living room or north facing room and a strategically placed floor fan to suck the cold air into the bedroom. use that fan for the kitchen during the day to suck the a/c air.

  44. anon (tfo) says:

    “this is a forum where some people don’t think 4300 N. Wolcott is “the city””

    Believe that was someone who lives in the ‘burbs.

  45. Groove77 says:

    “Try the stuffed gnocci at Fiorentino’s sometime, you can’t get something like that at the Olive Garden!”

    fried ravioli at rosal’s on taylor, you will ask for more bread just to dip in that ummmmmmmmmmmm good sauce.

  46. Groove77 says:

    anon,

    my dad still has the alluminum, multi-colored “strap” lawn chairs where he and his neighbors sit in the yard drinking old style and watching the cubs games. no joke any give Saturday or Sunday one of them will be drunk by 3pm and cut themselves on the arm rest.

    BTW they will be left to me in the will.

  47. Groove77 says:

    also barry you dont have to stick for the burbs anymore you are one of us now!

    or almost one of us, have you had the chance to sit at the closing table yet? your in for a treat :) its a whirlwind.

  48. Sonies says:

    “fried ravioli at rosal’s on taylor, you will ask for more bread just to dip in that ummmmmmmmmmmm good sauce.”

    They stuffed with meat? Because my wife is from St. Louis and she hates the fried ravioli’s up here because they are all stuffed with cheeze instead of meat. If you found a spot with meat raviolis you rule!

  49. anon (tfo) says:

    “my dad still has the alluminum, multi-colored “strap” lawn chairs”

    Is there still a hardware store that will re-web them? Otherwise, you need to be really careful keeping them dry and out of the sun.

  50. Groove77 says:

    sorry sonies, its cheese but 150% worth the trip

    anon, true value and crafty beaver still did in the late 90′s i dont know about now.

  51. Sonies says:

    worthless

  52. Barry says:

    “also barry you dont have to stick for the burbs anymore you are one of us now!

    or almost one of us, have you had the chance to sit at the closing table yet? your in for a treat its a whirlwind.”

    Eh, I’m not so much sticking up for the burbs than clearing up some misconceptions.

    Nah, haven’t closed yet. Financing is taking longer than expected and they haven’t done the appraisal yet either. I’ve been out of town a lot lately too (I’m in beautiful, boring Ellensburg, WA right now) which has slowed down things a bit. Probably another few weeks or so.

  53. Milkster says:

    Sonies, have you ever heard of La Gondola Pizzeria & Cucina Italiana? I did a search. They are at 2914 N Ashland between W George and W Oakdale in Lakeview. They have homemade deep fried meat or cheese ravioli with marinara or meat sauce. $6.50, son! Take your lady there.

    Check it out:
    http://www.boorah.com/restaurants/IL/chicago/la-gondola-pizzeria–cucina-italiana/6B892DF73E.html

  54. Sonies says:

    damn I used to live right by that place… thanks milkster!

    may have to do a la gondola & side street saloon night out :)

  55. Gary Lucido says:

    I’ll second the motion on La Gondola. Like it.

    Discussion of Italy reminds me. We went there a few years ago and wanted to grab a nice cafe lunch in Rome. Went to a small, quaint place and sat in the back. As we waited for our food every so often we would hear a ding and then some waitress would walk into a little room and come out carrying a tray. Couldn’t figure it out. The food turned out to not be very good. As we left we walked past the little room and it was stacked with microwaves. Right next to it was a freezer full of frozen dinners.

    Now it turns out that those frozen dinners all had pictures of three women (sisters) on them – the brand of frozen dinner. As we walked around Italy we noticed that most of the cozy cafes were advertising this same brand.

    Olive Garden is definitely better than the 3 sisters, though we did have some very nice dinners in Italy.

  56. anon (tfo) says:

    “Olive Garden is definitely better than the 3 sisters”

    See, I knew someone would have the anecdote.

  57. Dan says:

    I wonder what brand of canned pommodori Sbarro uses because their red sauce is sweet, vibrant and damn good.

  58. Sonies says:

    you guys ever eat at a Fazoli’s?

    I know groove has

  59. Question says:

    I third La Gondola. They are in the strip mall with the Jewel and have about three tables. So, you have to make a reservation or do take out.

    My parents still have their “strap” lawn chairs. My mom has re-webbed them a few times.

  60. Bob says:

    I like Bridgeport Village and honestly if some previous owners got hosed on buying at the peak what impact does that have on potential buyers?

    WRT the structural issue: I only know what I’ve seen on the youtube video where one owner was being interviewed. Apparently it happened to a house under construction. I’m not aware of any structural issues of completed houses but anyone feel free to add.

    I see foreclosures there going from 350k for a trashed one to 406k for a fairly intact one and so long as those code violations have been fixed, I see some value down in that nice oasis. I might buy down there in a couple years actually.

    “-Bridgeport Village is a disaster. The houses litterly are swaying in the wind due to the faulty engineering and construction. Basically they put huge windows on frmae constructions. I recall the developer ’solving’ the problem by bracing neighboring house to each other for support.”

  61. danny (lower case D) says:

    anon(tfo): “Driving everywhere and having a fun night out at Applebee’s? Being one of the great unwashed mass that visits the city twice a year (for Taste and one other thing) b/c it’s “too scary”? Keeping your trashcan in your garage and forgetting to roll it out, so the festering stick permeates your house for an extra week?”

    I know that you’re just poking fun with this suburban strawman… but I must state that there is fine dining (including all ethnic variations) in the suburbs. And a number of suburbs have refurbished (or brand new) downtown areas, with live music, shopping, galleries, etc. For jazz on the radio, Chicagoans are dependent on WDCB – College of DuPage Radio.

    Your Applebee’s-loving city-fearing caricature is more apt to be found in Peoria than in most suburbs. All of my friends who now live in the suburbs, lived in the City at one time. They come back all the time.

  62. danny (lower case D) says:

    I concur on the value of alleys. Some things need to be brought in through the front and some things need to be brought in (or snuck out) through the back. It’s best to have options.

  63. danny (lower case D) says:

    Bob: “I like Bridgeport Village…”

    Just take into consideration the history of the site. Being so close to the River and Bubbly Creek, there are serious historical contamination issues. Former Industries (brownfields), landfills, power plants, rail roads, street and canal construction, and the former stockyards have all left their “imprint” on the area. Same goes for Pilsen.

    The nearby Fisk Generating station still has no scrubbers, bahgouses, or any mercury controls — despite this being 2010. Their ability to pollute is “grandfathered” in.

  64. OLd Man says:

    “The nearby Fisk Generating station still has no scrubbers, bahgouses, or any mercury controls — despite this being 2010. Their ability to pollute is “grandfathered” in.”

    Fisk has baghouses, over fired air and precipitators; I was repairing the precips this spring and worked on the E4 outages when the overfired air was installed.

    Midwest Gen would be more inclined to install SCRs (NOx scrubbers) if the city’s green freaks would quit messing with them and trying to shut it and Crawford down. As it is the first ones will probably go in at Waukegan; then Rockdale and Romeo as well as Peoria and Havana. The burbs and Peoria will have cleaner air than the city thanks to the city’s green freaks.

  65. westloopelo says:

    ….we are seriously debating Italian restaurants? On a RE blog?
    Italian Garden? Really?
    To me the GC reminds me of Gramercy or Murray Hill – the NYC prices.

  66. danny (lower case D) says:

    Old Man… Fisk has electrostatic precipitators, not baghouses. Big difference. When Midwest Gen bought all of ComEd’s coal fired power plants, they knew that the New Source Review provisions of the Clean Air Act would eventually require them to retrofit pollution controls. But they counted on lax regulation and didn’t do a thing besides commission studies. This is 2010… I’m not impressed by overfire air.

    Back in 1999, I heard directly from Tom Skinner’s mouth (at the time head of the Illinois EPA) that all of the coal plants in IL will need to install SCRs (selective catalytic reducers) and FGDs (flue-gas desulfurization units). Here we are 11 years later, and Fisk and Crawford are still polluting like its 1959. These two power plants are a blight to the southwest side of Chicago.

    It is silly to blame “green freaks” from preventing MidWest Gen from doing their job. They have gotten away scott free for 11 years, and they will probably stretch it out as long as possible. Either install the damn controls or shut it down.

  67. Gary Lucido says:

    Bridgeport Village: Apparently, several houses have these side supports but I have not personally seen them. Interestingly, when we originally looked at the development I asked the sales center what used to be on the land and what environmental cleanup had been done. They did not give me a warm fuzzy. At the time I told my wife that this was Love Canal waiting to repeat itself.

    Fisk: Article in Crain’s this week about how a smart grid would allow them to shut down Fisk. That’s what they’re hoping for.

  68. danny (lower case D) says:

    One of the last remaining regular barge shipments on the Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal is delivering coal to Crawford & Fisk. Something to think about, regarding the Asian Carp migration to the Lake.

  69. Bob says:

    I’m not concerned that Bridgeport Village is a brownfield development, nor that Bubbly Creek has an environmental score of 11 out of 60 according to some report I read. I don’t plan on eating the soil nor swimming in the creek. I am much more concerned about the potential structural issues I have heard about. My horizon for buying is around three years away however, giving me some time to look into those.

  70. OLd Man says:

    I know the difference between a precip and a baghouse Danny; I was a boilermaker for 35 years and still come out of retirement for a job once in awhile when the hall is empty. Fisk has baghouses for the coal handling system and out by the fly ash silos by the river. If you have precips in the dirty gas path you don’t need baghouses in the path. You seemed to imply that there was no particulate system at Fisk and there is.

    Building SCRs is aces with me. But understand that Midwest Gen’s anxiety over the future of their Chicago plants makes them loathe to spend much dough on them. That’s business.

    Pardon me if I don’t mind the existence of Fisk and Crawford. I grew up in Chicago when it still largely a gritty industrial town and I liked it. There was lots of money made in the mills, factories and machine shops of Chicago. Now that money is gone and once thriving neighborhoods struggle and city services suffer. I miss the old flavor of Chicago too; the city of Big Shoulders has become the city of gourmet cupcakes and a Bohemian no longer means a sturdy, thrifty fella who works at Western Electric but a precious pipsqueak with a careful beard, non threatening tatoos and a funny bicycle.

  71. ChiTownGal says:

    Well, if Zambrano decides to join homeguy Ozzie maybe somebody can “pitch” this place to him! :-)

    Regarding alleys…why don’t more dog-owners use them for their obvious purpose, instead of inflicting their pooch’s end-products on their neighbors’ lawns?

  72. homedelete says:

    Old Man, you and I should go for a drink!

  73. valasko says:

    You go OLD Man…… give em hell

  74. Johnny says:

    OLd Man…you made me laugh..and that was not easy today for some reason…

  75. danny (lower case D) says:

    Old Man… I have much respect for all boilermakers. I’m aware of the historical importance of heavy industry and power in Chicago. Both Fisk and Crawford were technical marvels when they were built (ASME awards and all that). But like everything in life, it has a natural lifespan. Either upgrade or decommission. But make the decision based on science, economics, and public health. (by the way… the decision to shut down Zion was a big mistake).

    In fact, I share some of your nostalgia for a time when a blue collar pay check could support a family in Chicago. Just yesterday, I was at a foundry in Peoria where they make Cat engine blocks. It was doubly hot from the weather, and I was exhausted from just a 45 minute walking tour. I couldn’t imagine what it would take to work an 8 hour shift there.

    Midwest Gen’s failure to timely install pollution control equipment has resulted in a decade of degraded air quality for residents of the southwest side. I’ve spent many summer nights on a rooftop on 19th street watching the plume from Fisk. It does not disperse well and you can see visual evidence of where the particulates are landing (Bridgeport, University Village, Pilsen).

    Plus their failure to install pollution control equipment has resulted in tradesmen not being hired, steel not being procured, taxes not being collected.

  76. OLd Man says:

    “Plus their failure to install pollution control equipment has resulted in tradesmen not being hired, steel not being procured, taxes not being collected.”

    Indeed. You’ll get no argument from me; I want them to add the equipment and keep the places running and running clean.

    Zion: man I can tell you stories about that place for hours. Building it was my first job as an apprentice and I worked most of the outages there often as a boilermaker steward or general foreman. The Edison people at the plant had an odd culture. Braidwood was always run well and Dresden has been turned around but Zion; well they had problems. It didn’t help when Bechtel, a most capable outfit, pulled out of doing the maintainence.

  77. Sonies says:

    They should make the pollution from Fisk smell like Chocolate like the crap that spews from blommer

    That way, everyone is happy and its business as usual!

  78. ChiTownGal says:

    Sonies – you must be a male. No woman that I know of would EVER use that word to describe the heavenly aroma from Blommer’s!

  79. danny (lower case D) says:

    OLd Man… I’m sure we could talk for hours. I used to conduct emissions testing on smoke stacks for coal-fired power plants, incinerators, steel mills, refineries, etc. I’ve seen many facilities — good, bad, and ugly. (the nastiest places I’ve ever seen are corn processing plants that make HFCS and ethanol).

    I worked for many years at S&L Engineers, including lead permitting engineer for a new supercritical coal plant in Iowa and a natural gas peaker plant near the skyway bridge. I also worked on some nuke projects. Midwest Gen was a former client of mine (so I really shouldn’t bad mouth them in a public forum).

    I currently work for myself, doing energy efficiency audits and mechanical/electrical equipment inspection for large industries.

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