Astrolab Condos Ready to Rock It

You can trade your pencils for pens on this one.  The modest Near North condominium block marked down for 61 West Erie Street is a “go.”  The Chicago Plan Commission recently gave it the green light.

Rendering of 61 West Erie

Rendering of 61 West Erie. In the fog, for some reason.

There were a few stumbling blocks along the way, but nothing that LG Development couldn’t be solve with a few more aggressive setbacks, and a fat sack of cash to help illuminate Erie Park and its riverwalk.

We call it the “Astrolab Condos” for now because “61 West Erie” is a terrible name, and this was formerly the location of a film processing lab tied to such productions as The Dark Knight and The Break Up.  The project also includes the greystone four-flat next door, which will not be torn down.

The nice thing about living here is that you’re right next door to a Walgreen’s.  The bad thing about living here is that you’re right next door to a Walgreen’s.

Here’s the bird’s-eye low-down on this caper:

  • Address: 61 West Erie Street
  • Developer: LG Development
  • Architecture firm: NORR
  • Net site size: 5,268 square feet
  • Former zoning: DX-5 Downton Mixed Use
  • Floor Area Ratio: 7.4
  • Maximum height: 154 feet
  • Roof height: 133 feet
  • Floors: 13 (12 + roof deck)
  • Length: 100 feet
  • Width: 49 feet
  • Residences: 10
  • Auto parking spaces: 10
  • Bicycle parking spaces: 2
  • Garage access: via north-south alley on west side of building
  • Affordable Housing Opportunity Fund Payment: $175,000
  • Green roof alert! 1,693 square feet

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Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at

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