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Remaking the Street Plan
Burnham and Bennett's plan for the dramatic revision of Chicago's street network anchored their efforts to make the city more efficient and attractive. The Plan of Chicago’s scheme pursued several interlocking objectives. First, it hoped to alleviate congestion by providing better facilities for the movement of traffic into, through, and around the core of the city. Second, the plan sought to integrate the streetscape into general plans to beautify the metropolis. Third, it provided for better articulation of between street traffic and other modes of transportation. Finally, it hoped to provide better communication among outlying neighborhoods and suburbs than the existing combination of rectangular grid and radial highways provided. The scheme expanded the city's first boulevard circuit, laid out in the 1850s to link the major parks at what was then the edge of the city. The new boulevards would be beautiful, like the Parisian avenues that inspired them, but critics argued that the proposed removal of existing structures to make room for the new streets would be costly and disruptive.