Chicago Developer Eyes Endangered Cuneo Hospital for Arts Center

Midwest, Newsletter
Friday, April 26, 2013


The vacant Frank Cuneo Memorial Hospital in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood faces demolition to make way for the $220 million “Maryville” residential project, but the developer of Chicago’s Green Exchange has a plan to save the 1957 Edo Belli-designed building. David Baum, of Baum Development, said his plan to turn Cuneo into a neighborhood hub for Uptown’s artistic community would not require any subsidies. The rival plan from JDL Development calls for luxury apartments and $32 million of TIF funding.

But the two may not be mutually exclusive. JDL’s plan calls for development along the west side of Clarendon Avenue, while Cuneo is on the east. Baum’s plan awaits the approval of an architectural engineer who could vet the building’s structural integrity and help solidify plans for redevelopment.

Cuneo made Preservation Chicago’s list of seven most endangered buildings in 2012.

2 Responses to “Chicago Developer Eyes Endangered Cuneo Hospital for Arts Center”

  1. Al Kamieniecki says:

    I was born in the original hospital building in 1949 (it opened in 1944) and worked at the hospital in the clinical lab from 1971 until 1978. The original building, now demolished, was on Clarendon Avenue. The Edo Belli building pictured is on the NE corner of Montrose and Clarendon. A new addition was built across Clarendon.
    The 1957 building is very striking and cool. It could be a great focal point for a community facility. The newest building is connected by a overpass and would probably be demolished. It is newer but not unique.
    The problem the way I understood it, is asbestos remediation. As a hospital it would be too small for current technology. But the views out the patient room windows are spectacular. This building has a lot of potential. Hope it all works out, I would hate to see it torn down.

  2. Friends of Cuneo says:

    Many thanks for your encouraging comment, Al Kamieniecki. We’ve been hoping to find photos looking out from the windows, but no luck so far. Our online petition for the Cuneo Hospital buildings may be found here and there is a lot more info here on our facebook page:, We absolutely agree with you that it could be a great focal point for a community facility. It could do so much to bring Uptown together—both geographically and psychologically.

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