Ottawa Commercial Historic District

Ottawa’s commercial center is located at the junction of the Fox and Illinois Rivers, within an area originally bordered by the Illinois Michigan Canal (I&M Canal) to the north, the lateral canal to the west and a hydraulic basin to the south. The I&M Canal and the Illinois River together resulted in Ottawa’s prominence as an early trade and manufacturing hub. Ottawa and Chicago, cities at either end of the canal were both planted in 1829.   The area originally platted in 1829 presents predominantly commercial building. On November 22, 2011 an area roughly bounded by Superior Street to the north, Main Street to the south, Walnut on the west and Columbus Street to the east became Ottawa’s first Historic District.

East Side Historic District 

The residential area known as the East Side in the City of Ottawa was among the city’s premier neighborhoods in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Because of its initial isolation to Ottawa’s central business and commercial district west of the Fox River, the East Side became a prime location for the city’s early professional class, who built gracious homes on large lots, many overlooking the Fox River. On September 18, 2013 the East Side of Ottawa, situated on a peninsula bordered on the north and west by the Fox River, south by the Illinois River to the east side of Green Street became an Historic District.