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St. Laurence
Church & Rectory

7148 S. Dorchester Avenue, Chicago
(Joseph Molitor, 1911)


Closed by the Archdiocese of Chicago in 2002 as part of a parish consolidation plan, the St. Laurence parish served its South Shore community for 118 years. The church and rectory, built in 1911, are part of larger complex of properties that also include a school and convent.


In 2005 the complex was purchased by Eden Independent Living, which hoped to carry out a plan, approved by the city’s Plan Commission, to replace the school with a supportive living facility. It also hoped to find a compatible use for the church and rectory. The community subsequently objected to the plan, which has since been put on hold indefinitely.



The Edens group keeps the vacant buildings secure and temporarily has an occupant in the rectory.  However, last year pipes burst in the church, flooding the basement and causing substantial moisture damage to the interior. Both buildings are coded orange in the Chicago Historic Resources Survey, which will trigger a 90-day demolition hold if a demolition permit is sought by an owner.


The Renaissance Revival church and rectory were designed by Joseph Molitor, architect of five other orange-rated churches in the city, built between 1896 and 1913.


Photos: Robert Shymanski




For more information, contact: Michael Hamblet, Eden Independent Living,
Tel (312) 644-6869 .







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