By John Dodge
CHICAGO (CBS) — When Holmberg Aerial Survey Co. took to the skies in the 1930s to photograph every block of Chicago, U.S. Steel’s South Works was humming along as one of the largest producers of structural steel on the planet.READ MORE: Kyle Lowry Scores 19 Points, Heat Beat Bulls 107-104
The images here (click to enlarge) were taken in November of 1938, about five years after U.S. Steel had crammed the 576 acre site to capacity, with buildings to accommodate 20,000 workers.
A portion of the massive mill–where the Calumet River joins with Lake Michigan–is obscured by smoke from the manufacturing of the steel that built America’s cities and roadways.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Breezy With A Little More Sunshine
The site was abandoned in the 1990s and over several years the buildings were demolished.
Developers are now planning a new residential and retail development for the area, effectively creating a small city within the city between 79th and 87th streets along Lake Michigan.
The plan includes 13,575 single family dwellings and high-rise units, 17.5 million square feet of retail, connected by the extended South Lake Shore Drive.MORE NEWS: 'Success Absolutely Means Survival At This Point': Local Shops Inch Toward Recovery On Small Business Saturday
Also in the works: 125 acres of parks with bike paths, a 1,500-slip boat marina and a new high school.