When it comes to Chicago there is no question B is for Burnham.
Daniel Hudson Burnham (1846-1912) was an urban planner before urban planners existed. In addition to designing some of the first skyscrapers in the world, he was the driving force behind and the director of works for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, and his 1909 Plan of Chicago is said to be the first comprehensive plan for the controlled growth of an American city. In short, he was kind of a big deal.
In the past 100 years the city has adopted a few points from the Burnham plan, but there's one point in particular that I think is pretty fabulous.
It is thanks to Mr. Burnham that we enjoy 18 miles of public "play" space along Lake Michigan. Twenty-nine kilometers of lakefront path, public park, art installations and beautiful harbor. All that uninterrupted space for enjoying the beauty that is Chicago's "shore." Not too shabby.
Daniel Burnham's enormous, charismatic personality was matched only by his vision. And here in Chicago we are fortunate to enjoy a pretty spectacular part of that vision stunningly realized.
Have you read The Devil in the White City?
Daniel Burnham is the main character that doesn't murder a bunch of people...