The Lakeview Low-Line transforms the maintenance path under the Chicago Transit Authority elevated tracks into a continuous, half-mile long art walk and garden.

LAKEVIEW ROSCOE VILLAGE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE / FRIENDS OF LAKEVIEW / CHICAGO TRANSIT AUTHORITY

Lakeview Low-Line

Reinvestment and transformation of neglected community spaces and infrastructures promotes walkable neighborhoods and mass transit. The long-term redevelopment strategy for the Lakeview Low-Line allows a previously unsafe and underused space in the city to become a new community amenity and unique connector between the Lincoln Ave. and Southport commercial corridors.  Taking formal cues from the track structure itself, we developed a collection of custom urban furniture that synthesize overhead cover, sound mitigation, lighting, seating and vending. To create a dynamic overhead surface, to invite visitors into the space, and to enhance the quality of the upgraded LED lighting, we utilized the existing canopy to hang perforated metal scallops that are encompassed by a bright yellow ribbon. By improving neglected Chicago Transit Authority spaces at key station entries and paths between, the Lakeview Low-Line increases safe access and encourages use of the “L” as a sustainable mass transit alternative to cars.
COLLABORATORS
Fabricator: Landscape Forms
2020 AIA Philadelphia Merit Award
2019 AIA Chicago Small Projects Award
2019 AIA Pennsylvania Merit Award
2019 ASLA Illinois Merit Award

Program Development

The bright yellow rectangular boxes—which we call “cubbies”—are playful takes on a vendor booth, a picnic table, a wavy bench, and a lean-to.

Cubby as Cafe

In addition to being a comfortable place to linger for a few moments on either end of a commute, as well as a place to chat with a friend or charge your phone, local vendors sell coffee and pastries to commuters from the vending kiosk.

Integrated Art Panels

Murals by local artists round out the space and cover the entirety of the adjacent building walls and custom integrated art panels.

Art by Sentrock; Photo by Dillon Goodson

Active Light Installation

The second phase of construction is currently underway and  includes a pathway lined with interactive lightboxes and murals and a new passive garden space for the community.

The Lakeview Low-Line is a pilot project for the enhancement of the hundreds of miles of under-track public space in Chicago.

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