Homes of the “Homeless”

The dwellings of Chicago’s “homeless” reflect just how much effort and creativity people put into making “homes,” whether they’re tucked beneath viaducts, sheltered under trees, obscured behind electric boxes, or hidden in plain sight in downtown alleyways.

SJNN fellow Lloyd DeGrane and program co-director Kari Lydersen collaborated on this Chicago Reader photo essay documenting the dwellings of Chicago residents typically dubbed “homeless.” Living outside, whether in Rezkoville or on Lower Wacker Drive, is hardly ideal, but as DeGrane and Lydersen observe, “the level of cooperation and solidarity necessary to survive presents a sharp contrast to the many Chicago apartment buildings and residential blocks where people don’t know their neighbors and rarely interact.”