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The Origins of the Dual CityHousing, Race, and Redevelopment in Twentieth-Century Chicago$
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Joel Rast

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780226661445

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226661612.001.0001

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Learning to Live with the Slums

Learning to Live with the Slums

(p.227) Chapter Eight Learning to Live with the Slums
The Origins of the Dual City

Joel Rast

University of Chicago Press

This chapter describes the development of Dearborn Park, a new housing development built in the South Loop during the 1970s and early 1980s. Dearborn Park, sponsored and financed by a group of downtown business leaders associated with the Chicago Central Area Committee, was an effort to initiate the transformation of the near-downtown area into middle-class residential communities. The project was intended to increase the presence of middle-class whites in the downtown area, an objective viewed as central to the protection of downtown property values. Yet the project’s sponsors also sought to achieve some racial diversity in the new development. Concerned that the city’s growing black population would intensify white flight, the sponsors of Dearborn Park viewed the development as a model community that would disrupt rigid patterns of thinking about race and housing and persuade whites that integrated neighborhoods could work.

Keywords:   Dearborn Park, Chicago Central Area Committee, Thomas Ayers, Ferd Kramer, Philip Klutznik, Richard J. Daley, gentrification, neoliberalism

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