The Pullman National Monument

The Pullman National Monument

Site Design Group Ltd.

Chicago, Illinois

Located in Chicago, Pullman National Monument was the first model planned industrial community (Company Town) in the United States in 1880. It was the site of a historic strike and consequently the birthplace of the first African American Labor Union in 1925. In 2015, US President Barack Obama designated the site, which is still the home of many historic buildings, including the first National Park Service unit in Chicago.

The National Park Foundation supported construction of a new visitor center located in the iconic Pullman Administration Clock Tower Building and revitalization of the site. Leading up to the visitor center is a grand walkway and gathering space created with plank pavers in an Il Campo finish – a finish known for its uniquely brushed surface and durability. The granite color choice contrasts with the red brick of the historic clock tower and provides a warm welcome to the visitor center. 

Behind the building, original train tracks are interspersed with a combination of permeable and non-permeable pavers in a Series finish. The paving pattern mimics the look of the railway ties that were once there, resulting in  a functional and interactive expression of history.