Urban Remains Where the rustic things are

Based in Chicago’s West Town neighborhood, Urban Remains is a store specializing in recovering and recycling architecture artifacts.

Owner Eric Nordstrom roams all over Chicagoland to salvage abandoned buildings for vintage artifacts and re-sell them at the warehouse on 1850 W. Grand Ave.

Nordstrom and three staff members restored over 100 stained glass panels, a staple of Chicago's gilded age.

The store also has a collection of architecture drawings, including the blue print of the history Noel State Bank in Wicker Park. The building at 1601 N. Milwaukee Ave is now a Walgreens store.

With Chicago as the hunting ground, Urban Remains is the go-to time capsule for DIY community as well as Hollywood. Artifacts have made cameos in Breaking Bad and Transformers.

A huge collection of doors, knobs, hinges and locks also made the store a favorite among Chicago's installation art community. Lloyd Cooper, an artist based in Avalon Park said the oddities found at Urban Remains were essential to flush out Chicago's rich architecture in his work.


Yifan Wu, for Medill

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