The Roof… The Roof… The Roof is a Park
Jun29

The Roof… The Roof… The Roof is a Park

The British School of Chicago’s new South Loop campus is rapidly approaching completion.  For the most part, the exterior work is done and construction is currently focused on the interior spaces. Inspectors are already going over the work done to make sure everything’s ship shape. Inside there’s a library; a dance and drama studio; a fitness studio; a cafeteria and kitchen; a music classroom; and lots more specific...

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Mayors Emanuel and Daley Dedicate Maggie Daley Park
Jun15

Mayors Emanuel and Daley Dedicate Maggie Daley Park

Ribbon-cutting season continues in Chicago with the formal dedication and opening of Maggie Daley Park. The northeast corner of Grant Park, formerly known as Daley Bicentennial Plaza, recently underwent a $60 million renovation to bring it up to modern standards for an urban park, and to make it engaging for a greater number of people. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Jeff Johnson was there as Mayor Rahm Emanuel held court amid a...

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Brick Jockey Building Downtown Chicago One Lego at a Time
Jun08

Brick Jockey Building Downtown Chicago One Lego at a Time

Who of a certain age doesn’t love Legos?  As children we used piles of the multi-colored magic to turn our fantasies into reality, while barefooted nocturnal fathers cursed the tiny bricks, and indifferent mothers Hoovered them into clattering oblivion. No such tension exists in the Bronzeville home of Rocco Buttliere, where the IIT student is re-creating Chicago’s architectural nexus out of thousands of shiny plastic...

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Status Update: We Only Have Eyes for MiLa
Jun08

Status Update: We Only Have Eyes for MiLa

The residential tower at the corner of Michigan Avenue and Lake Street known as MiLa climbs ever-skyward.  Loop Spy Daniel looked out his office window at 200 North Michigan recently, and saw quite a show being put on by the workers from Pepper Construction and McHugh Construction— busy as little bees in their yellow netted hive. MiLa was designed by friends-of-the-blog, bKL Architecture, and is one of the cornerstones in the...

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Status Update: Someplace Old Gets Something New in the South Loop
May27

Status Update: Someplace Old Gets Something New in the South Loop

Space has been cleared, but there’s no actual construction yet down at Old Saint Mary’s Church at 1500 South Michigan Avenue in the South Loop.  As part of its “Phase III” project, it is constructing a new parish center for the oldest Roman Catholic parish in Chicago (no matter what Old Saint Pat’s people claim). The project is already about a year behind schedule, but groundbreaking ceremonies were held...

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Architecture and Art Come Together in Millennium Park
May22

Architecture and Art Come Together in Millennium Park

It’s already been built, but that doesn’t seem to matter.  Yesterday the Chicago Plan Commission approved the construction of a temporary art pavilion in Millennium Park. Chicago Architecture Blog reporter Daniel Schell was there when the city gave the go-ahead to the project called Small Chapel for One Person or at Most a Couple.  It’s a pavilion designed by Wheeler Kearns Architects for showcasing the work of...

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New Hampton Inn Opens in Historic Chicago Skyscraper
May20

New Hampton Inn Opens in Historic Chicago Skyscraper

A decade after the last tenant turned off the lights at 68 East Wacker Place, the lights are on once again and the place is open for business.  It took $41 million and years of anticipation, but the historic Chicago Motor Club Building has been transformed into a Hampton Inn. Officially, the hotel goes by the name of the “Hampton Inn Chicago Downtown North Loop Michigan Avenue.”  It’s OK if that’s a mouthful,...

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Two Minutes of Testa’s Turbine
May20

Two Minutes of Testa’s Turbine

  When you think of the Back of the Yards neighborhood, fascinating views may not be the first thing on your mind. But YouTuber Roman Alfredo brought his quadcopter over to the Testa Produce warehouse at 4555 South Racine Avenue and took a close-up tour of the company’s iconic power turbine. Location: 4555 South Racine Avenue, Back of the Yards Did you enjoy this article? Click to give the author a few...

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Loop Skyscraper Gets a Model’s Name
May18

Loop Skyscraper Gets a Model’s Name

They’re both modestly tall. They both have shiny skin. And now they’re both named “Mila.” The skyscraper erection at 200 North Michigan Avenue is now officially named “Mila,” just like model-turned-actress Mila Kunis.  But while the star of the Chicago-filmed Jupiter Ascending was born in southern Ukraine in the Soviet Bloc, the  skyscraper she now shares her name with was born just up the block at...

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Forget the Shovel, This New Highrise Needs a Shoehorn
May11

Forget the Shovel, This New Highrise Needs a Shoehorn

Not that many years ago, when this blog was just a toddler, the corner of North Wabash Avenue and Lower East North Water Street was a place where you’d go to hide from the world, get a cheap hamburger, and read the bulldog edition of the Sun-Times while trains crept by and the air filled with the smell of diesel and ink. The corner still exists, but the hamburger stand is in limbo.  The trains no longer roll through.  And the...

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