Back to Chinatown

In the first Chinatown post, I showed you the Nine Dragon Wall, the first ‘welcome’ to this fascinating Chicago neighborhood. Just beyond the wall is this lovely pagoda, the second ‘welcome’, as it were.

Magnificently constructed, the pagoda was still decorated with greens for the holidays.

Magnificently constructed, the pagoda was still decorated with greens for the holidays.

Here’s a closer look at the roof of this fine structure:

Chinatown-3

As I understand, the glazed terra cotta tiles for this pagoda and the Nine Dragon Wall were made in China…obviously by excellent craftsmen, because the detail is amazing!

Directly across Cermak Road is the Chinatown Gate–the third ‘welcome’–designed by architect Peter Fung, and erected in 1975.

The Chinese characters are hand-painted tiles, declaring, "The world belongs to the commonwealth"...pretty provocative, isn't it?

The Chinese characters are hand-painted tiles, declaring, “The world belongs to the commonwealth”…pretty provocative, isn’t it?

The building on the right, with the twin pagodas I showed you previously, is the Pui Tak Building, designed by Christian S. Michaelsen and Sigurd A. Rognstad in 1928 for the On Leong Merchants Association.  In 1993, it was purchased and renovated/restored by the Chinese Christian Union Church.

After you enter the Gate, you are bombarded with signs like these, in both Chinese and English.

Chinatown Signs-1

Chinatown Signs-2

Chinatown Signs-3

Chinatown Signs-4

There’s even one of these, located in the alleyway just before the Pui Tak Building:

Chinatown Signs-5

More, much more on Chinatown tomorrow!