Another Residential Tower Flowing Into River North
Dec22

Another Residential Tower Flowing Into River North

River North is going to get another new residential building. The Chicago Plan Commission greenlit 400 West Huron Street late last week.  Chicago Architecture Blog managing editor Mary Chmielewicz was there when the vote was taken, and if you follow our Twitter or Facebook feeds, then you got the alert instantly. 400 West Huron will be a 15-story building with 46 residences, designed by Berkelhamer Architects for developer Smithfield...

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Virgin Hotel Chicago Officially a Thing
Dec22

Virgin Hotel Chicago Officially a Thing

Congratulations to the Virgin Hotel Chicago, for actually starting to exist. For more than two years now, we’ve chronicled the transformation of the former Dearborn Bank Building at 203 North Wabash Avenue into the world’s first Virgin Hotel.  The first reservations are being taken for January 15th, 2015, though we’ve been told that the hotel will be open in December, so perhaps it’s already welcoming visitors?...

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Randolph Street Bridge Turns 30
Dec19

Randolph Street Bridge Turns 30

Editor’s Note: The Randolph Street Bridge turns 30-years-old this week.  To mark the occasion, Chicago Architecture Blog bridge specialist Patrick McBriarty shared this excerpt from his book “Chicago River Bridges.”  You can learn more about his book and buy it here, in print or Kindle format.     The current Randolph Street Bridge is the newest drawbridge built in Chicago, which is now thirty-years old and...

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A Touch of New York Approved for Streeterville
Dec18

A Touch of New York Approved for Streeterville

Today the Chicago Plan Commission breathed new life into the city’s skyline by approving the construction of 451 East Grand. The 65-story residential tower is being developed by friends-of-the-blog, Related Midwest, which is the Midwest outpost of New York’s Related Companies. The skyscraper destined for a plot of land near the lake’s edge in Streeterville was designed by New York architecture heavyweight Robert A.M....

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Historic, Abandoned Bridgeport Spiegel Building Turns a Page
Dec17

Historic, Abandoned Bridgeport Spiegel Building Turns a Page

The former Spiegel Administration Building may get a third shot at redevelopment, according to a recent report in DNAinfo Chicago.  We first became interested in the building at 1038 West 35th Street several years ago when we picked up an architecture photography client within sniffing distance of Bubbly Creek.  On the way back to the office from long days of shooting we often found ourselves contemplating the building as we stood...

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Sheridan Road Mansions
Dec16

Sheridan Road Mansions

The recent Open House Chicago event provided thousands of people, including me, the opportunity to step inside incredible spaces and step back in time. The two Sheridan Road Mansions I visited, the Downey and Gunder houses, provided a view of life a century ago. Along with their sprawling lots and surviving coach houses, it was a happy reminder of preservation gone right. Today, both mansions are Chicago Landmarks owned by the Chicago...

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Status Update: Tower Transformation in a Changing Neighborhood
Dec16

Status Update: Tower Transformation in a Changing Neighborhood

Even though it’s framed by construction elevators and festooned with plywood, the Northwestern Tower (1608 North Milwaukee Avenue) still maintains a silent dignity as it presides over the eclectic chaos that is the Milwaukee-Damen-North intersection. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Daniel Schell skidded by the other day to check out the progress as this 1928 neighborhood skyscraper by Perkins, Chatten & Hammond is...

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Mag Mile Mall Plans to Double in Size
Dec15

Mag Mile Mall Plans to Double in Size

The Shops at North Bridge (520 North Michigan Avenue) is putting together a huge growth plan that would see the Nordstrom-anchored mall at least double in size, and possibly grow even bigger than that.  North Bridge currently has 678,000 square feet of retail space across five floors.  It occupies portions of six downtown city blocks. The mall’s owner, Santa Barbara-based Macerich, made the announcement in a press release about...

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Candy Cranes: The Lights are on but No One’s Home
Dec11

Candy Cranes: The Lights are on but No One’s Home

Nobody is home yet at 200 North Michigan, the 41-story residential tower under construction at its eponymous address.  But that doesn’t mean it’s not decorated for Christmas.  Loop Spy Daniel was burning the midnight oil at the Illinois Center yesterday and sent in this photo of the 200 North Michigan tower crane all festooned with Christmas lights. The lights are both pretty, and pretty terrifying.  Imagine being the guy...

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Status Update: Ranger RIC
Dec09

Status Update: Ranger RIC

The Ability Institute of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (355 East Erie Street) is looking more and more like a skyscraper, and less and less like a steampunk nightmare, every day. The Chicago Architecture Blog‘s Daniel Schell stopped by recently and took these photographs of the building’s progress.  It’s hard to remember that this used to be the home of CBS radio and television in Chicago, and was the...

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