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History At the beginning of the 19th Century on the Southern side of the Chicago River, near to the current location of the Michigan Avenue bridge, Fort Dearborn was constructed. The first government sponsored and recognized settlement in Illinois, Fort Dearborn, was originally constructed as an outpost for troops surveying the land from Detroit, Michigan to Chicago, Illinois. Over a century later, following the Great Chicago Fire, Chicago uniformed it’s streets and roadways by putting the entire city on a grid. The intersection of Madison Street and State Street in the Loop was chosen as the zero point for the grid system giving a starting point for all other streets going North, East, South and West. The term, “The Loop” was originally coined from the path of the cable car transportation system that formed a loop located in the area.
Current The Loop is home to City Hall, the Mercantile Exchange, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago as well as world recognized high-rise buildings like Willis Tower. Many major worldwide corporations are headquartered in the loop including United Continental Holdings, also known as United Airlines. Many people commute daily to the Loop from surrounding Chicago neighborhoods, the suburbs of Chicago, and even from other states. The Loop is not just Chicago’s commercial core, it is also a place many people call home. With smaller neighborhoods within it’s borders such as, the New East Side and Printer’s Row, the Loop has increasing numbers of full time residents every year. With a number of condo and rental apartments to choose from, The Loop represents a diverse segment of residential living in Chicago.
Attractions Like many other Chicago neighborhoods, the Loop comes alive with festivals and events when inclement weather has left us for the season. Grant Park along the Eastern side of the Loop plays hosts to many of the Loops annual attractions. Come see some of the best musical acts in the world all in one place at Lollapalooza or sample fare from a gathering of Chicago’s top chefs at Taste of Chicago and Chicago Gourmet. The Chicago Museum of Art, the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum all offer wonderful experiences to explore in the Loop. Don’t miss the opportunity to test your nerves and travel up Willis Tower, at one point the world's tallest skyscraper, to get a spectacular view of downtown Chicago from the building's Sky-deck. Step out into one of four glass enclosures that extend off of the side of the building 1,353 feet from the ground. Look down, we know you can do it!