Status Update: RIC’s Place
Mar27

Status Update: RIC’s Place

For the first time in a long time, a medical skyscraper is going up in Streeterville that doesn’t have the name “Northwestern” on it. The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago’s new tower, called the Ability Institute, is rising at the corner of East Ontario Street and North McClurg Court.  It’s the former location of the CBS building where in 1960 the world’s first televised presidential debate took...

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With Renovations Both Planned and Unplanned, it’s a Big Week for CTA’s Blue Line
Mar26

With Renovations Both Planned and Unplanned, it’s a Big Week for CTA’s Blue Line

It’s only Wednesday, and already it’s been a busy week for the Chicago Transit Authority. Starting with the beginning of construction on the $492 million planned renovation of the Blue Line from downtown to the big airport to the involuntary and catastrophic renovation of the Blue Line’s O’Hare station in the middle of the night. So this might be a good opportunity for those of us who are transit-bound to...

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Neighbor News: Valparaiso University Puts the “Fab” in Pre-Fab
Mar24

Neighbor News: Valparaiso University Puts the “Fab” in Pre-Fab

  To the layman, the term “pre-fab” in construction conjures up images of double-wide trailers, assembled with staples, plastic sheeting, and low-grade M.D.F.  But the truth is that these days, computers turned that notion of “pre-fab” on its head. Witness Valparaiso University,  a little over an hour to our southeast.  The college is building a new dormitory, and Mortenson Construction is assembling it...

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Navy Pier Flyover Construction Begins. For Real This Time.
Mar24

Navy Pier Flyover Construction Begins. For Real This Time.

Construction begins today on the Navy Pier Flyover, a $60 million project that will streamline one of the more complicated bottlenecks in Chicago’s lakefront trail system. The project was designed by Chicago’s own Muller+Muller.  You may know that name from such hits as the CTA Brown Line Reconstruction, or the Damen, North, and Halsted bridges. Currently, bicyclists, joggers, walkers,  Segways, buggy-pushing nannies, and...

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Status Update: Virgin Loses Her Red Top, Gets Ready To Show Chicago Her Stuff
Mar19

Status Update: Virgin Loses Her Red Top, Gets Ready To Show Chicago Her Stuff

The world’s first Virgin Hotel is very privately getting ready for its debut. The unique red construction netting that once shrouded its upper reaches of the former Dearborn Bank Building at 203 North Wabash Avenue is long gone, and it doesn’t look like there’s too much more facade work to do. Most of the windows used to have a red masking tape grid on them. But now only a few do, which could mean that those portions...

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Status Update: Millennium Park Plaza Progress
Mar18

Status Update: Millennium Park Plaza Progress

Construction continues at the base of Millennium Park Plaza (151 North Michigan Avenue), the 40-story residential building on Michigan Avenue in the Loop that’s transforming its first and second floors into a retail and office arcade.  It’s one of six retail construction projects underway along Michigan Avenue in the two blocks between Millennium Park and the Chicago River, and has already inked a deal for a giant flashy...

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Status Update: The Tiny Alley That Will Soon Be A Hilton Garden Inn
Mar17

Status Update: The Tiny Alley That Will Soon Be A Hilton Garden Inn

Move over GEMS Academy, there’s a new contender for the title of “Chicago’s most cramped construction site.” GDS Companies has begun work on a new Hilton Garden Inn below street level at 66 East Wacker Place. The 26-story limited service hotel designed by GREC Architects is being squeezed into the tiny space between the Seventeenth Church of Christ and the Chicago Motor Club building.  It will be the third...

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Status Update: Not Playing Games at Arkadia
Mar17

Status Update: Not Playing Games at Arkadia

To paraphrase a favorite fictional Chicagoan, Ferris, “Chicago construction moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” That’s the case with Arkadia, going up at 765 West Adams Street in Greektown.  We cruised by the 33-story residential tower on the number eight bus just last Monday and admired its progress.  Two days later, bam!  Greektown spy Crealooper sends us...

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Status Update: 73 East Lake Buttoned Up
Mar13

Status Update: 73 East Lake Buttoned Up

It’s been a while since we last checked in on progress at 73 East Lake Street, and it looks like they’ve got the skin of the building pretty much buttoned up.  The concrete pedestrian barrier and scaffolding have been removed from the front of the tower and the incredibly thin building is starting to look like it’s always been there. Even though we miss the super nice Enterprise employees who used to run the skanky...

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Status Update: Borg Cube Assimilates 200 North Michigan
Feb28

Status Update: Borg Cube Assimilates 200 North Michigan

OK, maybe The Borg haven’t descended on the office building at 200 North Michigan.  But resistance still is futile. The six-story office building has been wrapped in a cube of scaffolding as demolition crews get to work removing the century-old building from our collective memories. In its place will soon be a 42-story blue glass residential tower designed by friends-of-the-blog, bKL Architecture.  Its 402 homes will be above...

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