October 2, 2012

4875 N. Magnolia Fades to Gray

I was happy when I heard that this vintage Uptown building across from the Bezazian branch of the Chicago Public Library was to be rehabbed for market rate apartments. With its griffins and gargoyles, it has some of the most interesting architecture in the neighborhood (photo comes from the real estate listing):


Unfortunately, when I walked by last weekend, this is what I discovered:


Flats, the owners of the new building, are in the process of painting it gray. Apparently, this is their signature look, and a number of buildings they have recently purchased are to get the same treatment.

Here's a closeup of the original red brick from one of the few sections left to be painted.


I scanned the exterior of the building, and it doesn't look like any facade work has actually been done prior to painting. Gray paint covers sections that should have been regrouted. Other damage has been covered. At the very least, I would think that the owners would remove the trees growing out of it and secure all the terra cotta before painting:


Once a building has been painted, you can't really go back. It's permanent. There are all kinds of masonry sites on the web that say you shouldn't paint brick, as it can cause even more damage to the structure. I wonder what this building will look like in the coming years.

5 comments:

Jeffrey littleton said...

Whatta shame.

Anonymous said...

I have always loved this building, too. I am happy it is not being torn down, but it is unfortunate that the new owners have decided to treat the building with a permanently damaging paint job that will only temporarily look good.

Jeffrey Littleton said...

They just ripped out the lobby to the bone. The lobby is in the dumpster...on the curb.

Is it ok to call "Flats" and Jay Michael a cancer on the architecture of Uptown now?

bob77021 said...

I remember when the Bezazian branch opened. Before that the closest library branch was on Broadway near Montrose, close to the Arcadia Roller Rink.

I lived at 4655 Magnolia at the time.

Anonymous said...

Just walked past the building today. It looks awful. Is Flats still doing this to other buildings?

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