Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Stars

The Stars, originally uploaded by William 74.

Every big city has it's motel row, and Chicago's was along Lincoln Avenue, in the West Ridge neighborhood. They had cool mid century architecture and funky old signs out front, with a distinct whiff of off-strip Vegas mixed in. Most of them are gone now, but a few are hanging on.

The Stars is an empty lot, having closed several years ago, but the awesome neon sign has hung on, looking out on Lincoln Avenue's traffic. This Googie-licious sign must have been quite a sight all lit up at night, although I understand that the Stars itself was a seedy dump.

You can tell a really old sign when it's got out of date nomenclature. Air conditioning is still kind of standard on older signs, but free television? When'd they stop having coin-op teevees? The sixties? The switchboard makes me wonder if there was an actual PBX in the office, and if it was still there, but disconnected, when the Stars was demolished.

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