New app guides you on walking tours of Chicago's history

Get ready to explore the architecture and history of the city in a new way, as there are changes to the annual architecture festival called “Open House Chicago.”

In Bronzeville, the tour starts at the Harold Washington Cultural Center, which was formerly a legendary theater.

Later, you see the oldest social hall as the Chicago Architecture Center guides you through history.

“We’re really hoping that Open House Chicago and the trails that are in the app are really the carrot people need to leave their comfort zone go to a place that’s less familiar and learn more about the richness of Chicago,” said Zachary Whittenburg of the Chicago Architecture Center.

COVID has changed Open House Chicago. Now, a new app guides you on walking tours. In addition, there are 50 online programs and the focus is Chicagoans, not tourists.

“What we tried to do is assume a certain baseline of knowledge and familiarity and not just do the usual suspects,” Whittenburg said.

Another new focus this year is helping struggling local businesses, so while you are touring Bronzeville, your app will recommend a great brunch spot like Peaches restaurant.

It is the tenth year for Open House Chicago, so it lasts 10 days.