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Status Update: Optima II
Feb23

Status Update: Optima II

Foundation work continues on the second tower in the miniature downtown development known as Optima Chicago Center. The first tower, a 42-story black and blue glass monolith at 200 East Illinois Street, opened in October of 2013. The second tower, next door at 220 East Illinois, is expected to rise 57 stores into the Streeterville skyline this year. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Daniel Schell visited the construction site...

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Status Update: What’s Not to See
Feb19

Status Update: What’s Not to See

One of the city’s most discrete transformations is happening in one of its most prominent locations. The venerable Chicago Athletic Association Building at 12 South Michigan Avenue is methodically being transformed into a 250-room hotel to be run by the upscale Thompson hotel chain. Thompson recently established a beachhead in the Gold Coast, turning the former Sutton Place Hotel (21 East Bellevue Place) into the Thompson...

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Status Update: Chestnut’s Boasting a Brand New Tower
Feb18

Status Update: Chestnut’s Boasting a Brand New Tower

Loop Spy Ryan rolled by the new residential tower going up on the corner of North State Street and East Chestnut Street in the city’s Gold Coast neighborhood. Designed by friends-of-the-blog SCB and developed by Newmark, it will reach 36 stories into the sky and hold 367 residences. It’s part of a two-part project for Loyola University at this location. The other is the neighboring Quinlan School of Business building, a...

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Status Update: River Point Starting to Grow
Feb17

Status Update: River Point Starting to Grow

River Point (444 West Lake Street) is starting to take off.  The future 52-story skyscraper’s concrete core has reached about level nine, according to the photograph sent in this morning by Fulton River District Spy Mike.  When finished, the tower hard against North Canal Street will climb 730 feet into the sky, gazing directly down the main channel of the Chicago River. In exchange for the sunsets that used to be visible from...

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Status Update: AIOTRIOC (Ability Institute of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago)
Feb17

Status Update: AIOTRIOC (Ability Institute of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago)

The Streeterville block that brought Chicago M*A*S*H and Chicago Hope will soon be full of actual doctors doing actual amazing things, and not just people playing doctors on TV. Our Daniel Schell recently wheeled by the rising Ability Institute of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago going up at 355 East Erie Street, on the site of what used to be the CBS Building. And while it’s great to see a vacant lot turned into a...

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Status Update: Wolf Point West
Feb17

Status Update: Wolf Point West

The latest skyscraper getting ready to punctuate Chicago’s skyline is rapidly growing in River North. Loop Spy Ryan took this photo from someone’s home with a much better view than ours showing Wolf Point West (350 North Orleans Street) rising into the sky, right on the edge of the confluence of the North and Main branches of the Chicago River. You can see how the below-grade parking garage yields to the residential...

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410 East Grand Is Go For Launch
Feb17

410 East Grand Is Go For Launch

If you’ve been looking at the muddy, snowy, machinery-strewn lot at the corner of Grand and McClurg in Streeterville wondering when a skyscraper is going to sprout, the answer is: Now. The city of Chicago has issued a permit to begin construction on the 45-story residential tower, more than four years after the project was approved.  The Chicago Architecture Blog‘s Daniel Schell was there just days ago, and took the...

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Status Update: Growing 200 North Michigan
Feb16

Status Update: Growing 200 North Michigan

We’ve been following the development of 200 North Michigan since before it was a thing. Now it’s officially achieved thing status and is rapidly developing into downtown Chicago’s newest and glossiest skyscraper. Designed by friends-of-the-blog bKL Architecture, 200 North Michigan will be a 41-story residential tower with two floors of retail at the base. It replaced a six-story masonry office building that was built...

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Status Update: How Did That Garden Inn Grow
Feb10

Status Update: How Did That Garden Inn Grow

It’ll be a few months before the tulips start poking their heads up along Michigan Avenue again, but one off-Michigan garden has already fully sprouted. The new Hilton Garden Inn at 66 East Wacker Place has topped out and developer GDS Companies out of Evanston is looking forward to the building going into full  bloom in the next few months.  As you can see in these photos from Loop Spy Daniel, the 26-story building designed by...

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Status Update: Block37.5
Feb03

Status Update: Block37.5

The bits and pieces are coming together for the new residential tower rising above the Block37 mall in downtown Chicago (25 West Randolph Street).  The picture above was taken yesterday by Loop Spy Ryan, and shows that the massive weight-shifting truss that makes the new building work with the old building has been enclosed.  Meanwhile, concrete forms are in place so that the floors of the SCB-designed building can be poured. When...

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