215 West Lake Tower Won’t Intrude on Monk’s
Jul30

215 West Lake Tower Won’t Intrude on Monk’s

Beloved neighborhood tavern Monk’s Pub won’t see a wrecking ball anytime soon.  In a telephone call with developer Mike Moceri, he confirmed to The Chicago Architecture Blog that the footprint for his planned 215 West Lake Street tower will not step on the historic drinkery.  215 West Lake is currently a low-slung parking garage. 215 West Lake, you’ll remember, is being designed by architect Thomas Roszak for a plot...

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Fulton-Randolph Market Area Is Now An Official Landmark District
Jul30

Fulton-Randolph Market Area Is Now An Official Landmark District

The City of Chicago this week made it official: 142 properties in the Fulton-Randolph Market District now have landmark status. For years, this chunk of the West Loop was home to meatpackers, food processors and warehouses. Those businesses still exist, but they now share the neighborhood with tech giant Google, rehabbed residential developments and pricey restaurants. Landmark status now impacts the 74-acre district that include the...

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Streeterville Skyscraper Goes Supermodel: Taller, Thinner
Jul30

Streeterville Skyscraper Goes Supermodel: Taller, Thinner

The new residential tower planned for 465 North Park Drive in Streeterville has been revised. It is now slightly thinner than before, and 535 feet tall. Earlier versions of the plan made public had the building clinking just 513 feet tall. The 22-foot difference on the outside was caused by changes in the inside, where the number of three bedroom residences has been increased. Putting the previous Pappageorge Haymes rendering and the...

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Tying up the Loose Ends at Maggie Daley Park
Jul30

Tying up the Loose Ends at Maggie Daley Park

  The lakeside park that started with a bang of controversy is wrapping up with the whimper of compromise as the Chicago Park District ties up the loose ends at Maggie Daley Park (337 East Randolph Street). Named for the former Mayor’s late wife, the park’s pre-construction phase was dogged by controversy as various local interest groups sought to have the existing park changed, or sometimes not changed, to suit their...

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Viceroy, SLS Both Promising Chicago Hotels by 2017
Jul29

Viceroy, SLS Both Promising Chicago Hotels by 2017

  People who talk big are sometimes told to “put it in writing.”  Well, two hotel chains have done that, and they’re both targeting 2017 to plant their flags in Chicago. Unfortunately, the “writing” isn’t in the form of building permits… yet. In fact, so far it mostly amounts to boosterism. But even boasting in print costs money, so someone has to be clued in before spending thousands of...

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Wabash Art Gets The Green Light — and Blue and Orange and Yellow…
Jul28

Wabash Art Gets The Green Light — and Blue and Orange and Yellow…

The ambitious and inspirational art project that seeks to line the underside of the CTA L tracks on Wabash Avenue with multi-colored lights is going to get a test.  Thanks to almost $60,000 donated by nearly a thousand people through a Kickstarter campaign, the CTA and CDOT will allow artists Jack Newell and Seth Unger to install light tubes on a small test section of the street. The plan is to install the test between Monroe and...

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Walton No. 9 Ready For Launch
Jul28

Walton No. 9 Ready For Launch

Well, that was fast. The luxury condominium tower planned for 9 West Walton Street has gone from rumor to building permit in just five months, which must be some kind of record.  That’s even faster than River Point, which had the personal backing of Mayor Rahm Emanuel.  That’s faster than Wolf Point West, which cruised to reality on half-century-old zoning. The city of Chicago churned out the first permits a few days ago:...

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West Town NIMBYs Get a New Target To Sink Their Teeth Into
Jul28

West Town NIMBYs Get a New Target To Sink Their Teeth Into

There’s something about a West Loop NIMBY.  They’re not like the ones in other parts of the city.  They lack the sophistication of a Gold Coast NIMBY, the experience of a Streeterville NIMBY, and the disorganization of a South Loop NIMBY.  But what they lack in those areas they make up for in ferociousness, hyperbole, drama, and batshit foaming-at-the-mouth devotion to their cause. Speaking favorably about a new building...

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Emanuel To Propose Streamlined Ordinances For Transit Oriented Developments
Jul27

Emanuel To Propose Streamlined Ordinances For Transit Oriented Developments

Chicago is arguably one of the most public transit-friendly cities in the country. Mayor Rahm Emanuel will take action this week to encourage developers to place even more emphasis on transit. Emanuel plans to introduce a transit oriented development (TOD) reform ordinance at the July 29 City Council meeting. The reform would create incentives for more development near CTA and Metra stations. The move could generate significant new...

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NIMBYs Win in Park West; Kill Residential Tower
Jul27

NIMBYs Win in Park West; Kill Residential Tower

Plans for a 17-story residential tower in the city’s Park West neighborhood have been abandoned after pressure from neighborhood groups. 43rd Ward Alderman Michele Smith put out a statement to her constituents explaining what happened that killed the Pappageorge Haymes-designed project called 2775 North Hampden Court: After several months of discussion and prolonged negotiations among my office, the Park West Community...

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