THREATENED: 3726-28 N. Lake Shore Drive has a clear path to demolition

3726-28 N. Lake Shore Drive. Photo Credit: Ward Miller / Preservation Chicago

[Research for this article was provided by Matt Wicklund]

A beautiful, Sullivanesque ornamented building fronting North Lake Shore Drive, Lincoln Park and the Chicago lakefront looks to be headed toward demolition.

The three-story and raised basement, buff brick- and terra cotta-clad apartment building at 3726-28 N. Lake Shore Drive (originally Sheridan Road) was built in 1912-1913 for L. C. Gerhart and designed by architect Henry Hale Waterman, who is well noted for his residential work including fine quality houses. Most of Waterman’s buildings are on the Far South Side in the Beverly-Morgan Park community where many structures by Waterman are in the Longwood Drive Chicago Landmark District as well as the National Register Ridge Historic District. There are also many of his buildings on the North and Northwest Sides of Chicago are well. The building has three large units, with a common space entrance and possibly a manager’s suite on the ground floor.

Despite the grand detailing and character of this 1912-13 building, it was not listed as orange- or red-rated (of the highest significance) but green-rated in the Chicago Historic Resources Survey (CHRS) that was completed nearly 25 years ago. The green rating in this case indicates that it was noted as significant in the Illinois State Survey in the 1970s. However, that did not translate into a higher-significance rating. Ideally, all buildings in the CHRS should be protected by the 90-Day Demolition Delay Ordinance.

There is currently scaffolding across the front of the building, and the building has various code violations – many related to its façade. 46th Ward Alderman James Cappleman’s web site shows tentative drawings for a 4-story, newly constructed building planned for the site. The current owners purchased the property in 2016 for $8,750,000.

We want to encourage a solution which preserves at a minimum the Sullivanesque façade of the building.

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