Chicago Landmarks

Old Republic Building

View from Michigan Ave.     Address: 307 N. Michigan Ave.
Year Built: 1924
Architect: Vitzthum, Karl, and Co.
Date Designated a Chicago Landmark: December 8, 2010

Cartouche Classical Revival ornament The Old Republic Building is a 23-story office skyscraper designed in the Classical Revival style with finely detailed white terra-cotta crafted by the Northwestern Terra-Cotta Company. It was commissioned by businessman Herbert Bell as the headquarters for the Bell and Zoller Coal Company and originally named the Bell Building. In 1956 it was sold to the Old Republic Life Insurance Company and has since been known as the Old Republic Building. Located on the northeast corner of North Michigan Avenue and East South Water Street, the building was one of the first tall buildings to be constructed on the newly widened North Michigan Avenue south of the Chicago River in the early 1920s. The building exemplifies the commercial development that occurred in the 1920s as a result of major improvements brought about by Burnham and Bennett's 1909 Plan of Chicago, including the construction of the North Michigan Avenue bridge and the northward extension of Michigan Avenue as a wide Parisian-style Boulevard.

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