Status Update: San Francisco Company Reviving New York Building in Downtown Chicago
Mar03

Status Update: San Francisco Company Reviving New York Building in Downtown Chicago

The conversion of the former New York Life Insurance Building in The Loop continues apace. It is just the latest in a series of projects converting office buildings into hotels downtown. So many, in fact, that this project and the Hyatt Centric conversion stand back-to-back, and can be confused for one great big hotel conversion project if you’re not careful. Our Daniel Schell was careful when he rang the bell at 39 South...

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Z6: Chicago’s Most Unique and Still Working Swing Bridge
Mar03

Z6: Chicago’s Most Unique and Still Working Swing Bridge

A relatively unknown but still active swing bridge crosses the North Branch of the Chicago River at a bend in the waterway roughly one block south of Cortland Street. Built in 1899 by the Chicago, Milwaukee and Saint Paul Railway (commonly referred to as the Milwaukee Road), this bobtail swing bridge is still active. Due to its very low river clearance, it is normally left in the open position so as not to impede barge and river...

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Wabash Avenue Gets a 12-Step Plan to Recovery
Mar02

Wabash Avenue Gets a 12-Step Plan to Recovery

It’s no secret that Wabash Avenue in the Loop needs help. It is a dark, loud, imposing, and occasionally menacing streak running through the heart of Chicago’s tourist district. Its physical ills are a psychological barrier that keep tourists and their tourist dollars from flowing between Millennium Park/Michigan Avenue and the State Street corridor. There have been several attempts to clean up Wabash in recent years,...

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Status Update: Hyatt Centric in The Loop
Mar02

Status Update: Hyatt Centric in The Loop

The transformation of the fairly anonymous office building at 100 West Monroe Street into Chicago’s first Hyatt Centric hotel is progressing nicely. The Chicago outpost, officially christened Hyatt Centric The Loop Chicago, is one of a dozen cities that are part of Hyatt’s launch of the new lodging brand. Other launch cities include New York (natch), Paris, D.C., and three places in California. The Hyatt Centric brand is...

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Status Update: Nibbling Away at Chicago’s Loop Indigo
Feb24

Status Update: Nibbling Away at Chicago’s Loop Indigo

The former Atlantic Bank building at 168 North Michigan Avenue looks like it’s been gnawed on by angry terra cotta beavers. And unfortunately, that’s how it’s looked for over a year now. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Daniel Schell recently assessed the progress of turning the former home to the Greek National Bank into Chicago’s next Hotel Indigo. What he found is a building with many nibbles taken out...

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Lincoln Park Zoo Greenlit for New Education Center
Feb20

Lincoln Park Zoo Greenlit for New Education Center

The Lincoln Park Zoo is going to build a new education center. Yesterday the Chicago Plan Commission approved the zoo’s request to build “a second story addition above the existing first floor area of an existing one and two story building.” Sharon Dewar, director of public relations for the zoo, sent along this description: The new Education Center will impact the future of informal education for cultural...

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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: 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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Golub Townhome Development to Begin Demolition And Pre-Construction
Feb17

Golub Townhome Development to Begin Demolition And Pre-Construction

The former XO Condo Development at 1712 South Prairie in the South Loop will re-emerge as a pricey condominium complex in about 18 months. The new Golub Town Home Development, designed by Sullivan Goulette & Wilson, will begin pre-construction activities in the next few weeks. A status report on Golub and several other pending developments were on a busy schedule at the Prairie District Neighborhood Association (PDNA) community...

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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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