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Millennium Park Monument - The Colonnade - Wrigley Square Chicago
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© Christine Till
The Millennium Monument in the northwest section of Chicago's Millennium Park at Randolph Street and Michigan Avenue, is a semicircular colonnade made up of 16 limestone Roman Doric colonnade columns that rise nearly 40 feet, arranged in a half circle around a central fountain that also serves as seating. The choice of Roman Doric speaks to the classical nature of other portions of Millennium Park (not to mention Chicago in general) and also has an interesting dialog with the giant Ionic columns of the former public library now Chicago Cultural Center immediately across the hectic boulevard.
The Colonnade is an homage to a similar semi-circular colonnade that once stood on this corner from 1917 to 1953 but was demolished to make way for an underground parking lot. The Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. Foundation donated $5 million to the city for the construction of this 20% smaller replica. Because Wrigley Co.'s roots are in the city the gift was a way to give back to the people of Chicago. So the peristyle, with its surrounding lawn area and a fountain, was named Wrigley Square. It is a monument to the corporations, foundations and individuals whose donations helped develop the 24-acre Millennium Park. The square temporarily served as an exhibit space for outdoor sculpture and small cultural performances are held here.
The Colonnade and fountain shapes the surrounding natural landscape into an orderly composition. It is one of the many beautiful monuments erected which makes Millennium Park a pleasing and harmonious link in Chicago's park system which is connected by a system of boulevards unequaled by any other city.
January 10th, 2013
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