The land along McCormick Blvd. and the north channel of the Chicago River that runs though the Village of Skokie is owned by the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago. This land had been sorely neglected for a number of years, and by the mid-80’s had become a community eyesore. The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District developed guidelines and wanted suggestions for its improvement. The Village of Skokie came forward with plans to turn the area into a recreational park with biking and jogging paths and picnic areas. At the same time, a group of private citizens proposed using the park to display large scale contemporary sculptures.
What evolved by 1988 was the Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park, Inc., a collaboration between these three entities. The Village cleaned and landscaped the area and created parking lots, pathways, benches and other amenities. The citizens incorporated as a private not-for-profit corporation with a mission to select, install and maintain a world-class sculpture exhibition and to provide educational programs to enhance the appreciation of these exhibits.
Today, the Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park runs for two miles from Dempster Street on the north to Touhy Avenue on the south and displays more than 60 sculptures by artists of local, national and international reputation.