Wicker Park

WickerPark_feature_CourtneySpearman_2011.jpg
Chicago, IL
United States
Wicker Park

Landscape Information

Located on the west side of Chicago, the four-acre park is in the historic neighborhood of Wicker Park. Both the park and neighborhood were named for early Chicagoans Charles and Joel Wicker.

The earliest design for the triangular park included lawn areas, trees, and an artificial lake at its center. In 1885, the West Park Commission took over care and maintenance from the city of Chicago. Five years later the lake was filled and replaced with lawn. During this same period, a cast iron fountain designed by J.L. Mott Ironwork Company was installed in a central granite basin and became the centerpiece of the park. The basin, ringed by a seating area, sits along a central axis of the park, which runs northeast to southwest. The fountain remained in the basin until 1908, when Jens Jensen, then the West Park System Superintendent, had it removed and converted the basin into a children’s wading pool. In 2001, a reproduction of the original fountain was re-installed along with reproduction benches and urns. Trees and extensive ornamental planting beds line the edges of the park, which also includes a playground, basketball court, baseball diamond, and fieldhouse. The park is part of the Wicker Park Historic District, listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.