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Motley School Apartments

This is an archived listing.


739 N. Ada St.


West Town


John J. Flanders, 1884


Pappageorge Haymes Partners, 2019



Built in 1884 and now an official Chicago Landmark, the John Lothrop Motley School building reopened in 2019 with 34 high-end apartments. This beautiful Renaissance Revival style structure, featuring a peculiar pinwheel arrangement of classrooms, was one of 53 CPS schools declared obsolete and shuttered back in 2013. The school was enlarged in 1898 with a top floor gymnasium, and new fireproofing systems were installed, beginning Chicago's trend toward fireproof school buildings. The building’s most recent renovation introduces modern luxuries like stone countertops, top-quality appliances, and in-unit laundry to vintage interior spaces characterized by 14-foot ceilings, wainscoting, transom windows above doorways, old chalkboards, and original 1880s cupboards. The redesign preserved the dimensions of the hallways as used by students, and added parking and a common rooftop deck with skyline views.

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