The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 |

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Village Hall named to National Register of Historic Places

Oak Park’s Village Hall has been named to the National Register of Historic Places, a significant designation that comes nearly a decade ahead of schedule.

Typically, buildings and properties are not eligible for inclusion on the venerable list until after at least 50 years. Officials used a special criterion to permit Village Hall’s acceptance, due to its important place in the history of Oak Park.

Village Hall was constructed at 123 Madison St. from a design by the Chicago architecture firm of Harry Weese & Associates. The building reflects Weese’s modern design influence, with its open plan representing open government.

In addition to being the center of municipal administration, Village Hall is historically significant in Oak Park’s efforts to achieve racial integration and community stabilization during the 1970s.

The construction of Village Hall at a carefully chosen location just blocks from Chicago’s west side played a key role in Oak Park’s struggle to break the downward spiral of white flight from re-segregation and led to the Village becoming a model integrated community.

Completed in 1975, the building is designed around a paved, open exterior courtyard that creates a centralized common area with cloistered views that allow ample sunlight into the interior public and office spaces.

The elevated, triangular, two-story Council Chamber — the dominant architectural feature of Village hall — contains a semicircular conference table for Village Board members and raised built-in benches that can accommodate up to 200 citizens. The configuration of the benches places citizens no more than 19 feet from the Village Board president.

The National Register, established in 1966, is the nation’s official list of historic places worthy of preservation, with more than 86,000 listings. The Register recognizes properties of national significance, but also those such as Village Hall that played important roles in the history of local communities.

National Register listing does not impose any restrictions on changes to the building. However, it gives federal and state preservation agencies an opportunity to comment prior to funding, licensing or approving a project that will affect a property listed on or eligible for the National Register.

For more information on historic preservation in Oak Park, call 708.358.5417 or email