Tinley Park’s Oak Park Avenue Train Station featured in AIA Illinois Great Places Coloring Book distributed at state fair
The Village of Tinley Park’s Oak Park Avenue Train Station is not just a hub for the hundreds of commuters who flow through it each day; it also sets the backdrop for community events at the adjacent Zabrocki plaza and has even hosted showers and wedding receptions at its in-station café/banquet hall called Cavallini’s in the Park.
The station welcomes families as well. Children can touch the durable materials, marvel at its three-story clock tower, and best of all, hear and feel the roar of the passing Metra train engines. And this summer, the station helped plant the seeds for many future architects thanks to AIA Illinois, the state chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
The Tinley Park station, designed by Legat Architects, was one of 17 projects featured in the Illinois Great Places Coloring Book published by AIA Illinois. In August, the organization distributed the book to 1,500 children at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield. The station appears amid such iconic buildings as the Illinois State Capitol (Springfield), the Water Tower & Pumping Station (Chicago), Frank Lloyd Wright’s Dana-Thomas House (Springfield), and Chicago’s Union Station.
Anna McFarland, AIA Illinois communications and engagement manager, said, “we created the book to get children excited about architecture and educate them on historic sites across the state.”
The projects within the book are among the organization’s 200 Great Places in Illinois list. According to AIA Illinois, the places were “selected by a state-wide committee of architects, local officials and other organizations, in an effort to showcase the best of Illinois.”
Since the Tinley Park station was completed in 2002, it has become one of the southwest Chicago suburb’s most recognizable buildings. The Arts & Crafts style facility, with its stone walls and wood rafters, pays tribute to the village’s rich rail history and serves as a gateway to its historic downtown. When Businessweek named Tinley Park the best place in the U.S. to raise a family in 2009 and Chicago magazine named the village among the 20 best towns/neighborhoods in Chicago and the suburbs, it was the Oak Park Avenue station that accompanied the news.
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