Here We Grow!  Vista Tower Gets Full Construction Permit for All 95 Stories
May12

Here We Grow! Vista Tower Gets Full Construction Permit for All 95 Stories

The biggest thing to hit Chicago’s skyline since the Aon Center is about to become a reality. The City of Chicago has issued a full building permit for the Vista Tower in Lakeshore East (363 East Wacker Drive). Take a slurp of coffee and a deep breath and enjoy the OMG: CONSTRUCTION AND BUILD-OUT OF LEVEL 1 TO LEVEL 95 OF PROPOSED 95-STORY MIXED USE BUILDING Now just let that settle in… ahh. The tower will be the...

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Just Out of the Ground and Already the Vista Tower is Bracing for Chicago Wind
Feb22

Just Out of the Ground and Already the Vista Tower is Bracing for Chicago Wind

One day way back in 2003 we wandered up on East Upper Randolph Street and gazed down at a lone bulldozer grading the warm brown earth that once was an urban golf course into the gentle slopes that would one day characterize Chicago’s Lakeshore East development.  The construction work hasn’t stopped since. Though we’re 14 years into this blog writing about Lakeshore East, and almost 48 years since it was first...

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After Many Long Days, Studio Gang’s Solstice About to Cast Shadows
Feb13

After Many Long Days, Studio Gang’s Solstice About to Cast Shadows

This past Friday, Mother Nature issued a permit allowing the daffodils in Lincoln Park to start reaching out of their burrows and raising their heads skyward.  Coincidentally, it was the same day that the City of Chicago issued a permit allowing Hyde Park’s newest skyscraper to grow to its final height. CONSTRUCT NEW 26 STORY, 250 DWELLING UNIT BUILDING. 316 PARKING SPACES IN A 5 STORY CLASS J GARAGE. REFERENCE...

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Studio Gang Apartment Design For St. Louis Has Distinctive Onion Flavor
Dec14

Studio Gang Apartment Design For St. Louis Has Distinctive Onion Flavor

Chicago’s Studio Gang has unveiled the dramatic design for a proposed 36-story apartment building in midtown St. Louis that looks, to me at least, like a bloomin’ onion. The tasty yet unhealthy 1,954-calorie Outback Steakhouse appetizer bears a similar leaflike appearance to Studio Gang’s first St. Louis skyscraper. Englewood, New Jersey-based Mac Properties is the developer. The $130 million project is expected to...

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A Cold Bridgeport Welcomes Studio Gang’s Hot Boathouse
Dec06

A Cold Bridgeport Welcomes Studio Gang’s Hot Boathouse

On a cold Sunday morning, Bridgeport and the 11th ward welcomed two firsts: the first snow of the season, and the shiny new Eleanor Boathouse. The metal clad boathouse stands out as a new public icon in the ever-changing South Side neighborhood. Located in a brand new public park, Park 571 (2860 South Eleanor Street), the boathouse is intended to create new connections between the Chicago Parks District, Chicago Public Schools...

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A Touch of Wanda
Nov28

A Touch of Wanda

Whoever asked for a 93-something story skyscraper for Christmas, Santa’s little helpers are busy right now stuffing your stocking over in Lakeshore East. That’s where Loop Spy Jon took the photo above, showing busy bees putting in a foundation for the Vista Tower.  When completed, the tower will rise more than 1,100 feet into the sky, just a couple of blocks from the Lake Michigan shoreline, and just across Wacker Drive...

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New Boathouse May Be the Beachhead Bridgeport Needs
Sep29

New Boathouse May Be the Beachhead Bridgeport Needs

When any neighborhood starts to turn around in Chicago, it needs a beachhead.  A physical symbol of the future of the neighborhood so large and so impressive that it signals a point of no return.  Think Aldi and Target in Uptown.  Or 1K Fulton in West Town.  Or Kingsbury Plaza in River North. In Bridgeport, that beachhead may well be the Studio Gang-designed boathouse now under construction at 2754 South Eleanor Street. It’s the...

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Another Studio Gang Building Ready To Start In Hyde Park
Sep23

Another Studio Gang Building Ready To Start In Hyde Park

Just a couple of days after Studio Gang’s new North Residential Commons opened at the University of Chicago, another Gang design is just about ready to rise. The Hyde Park Herald reports that construction fencing is expected to go up in two weeks for Solstice Hyde Park, at 1556 East 56th Street, across from the Museum of Science and Industry.   It will replace the current parking structure next to the Windermere House. When we...

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Studio Gang’s New University of Chicago Dorm Now Open
Sep19

Studio Gang’s New University of Chicago Dorm Now Open

Most colleges have already had their move-in days, but down at the University of Chicago, one building did move-ins over the weekend. It’s the North Residential Commons (don’t call it a “dorm”), designed by the gang at Studio Gang. The project also includes the Frank and Laura Baker Dining Commons; assorted classrooms and offices; and 10,000 square feet if public retail space, creating a gateway to the storied...

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Big Names, High Hopes for Chicago Union Station Redevelopment
Sep14

Big Names, High Hopes for Chicago Union Station Redevelopment

The redevelopment of Chicago Union Station and the surrounding properties continues to creep along like a  Hiawatha Service train a stuck behind yet another Canadian National freight mess. The latest bit of news is that Amtrak has narrowed down the list of developers (well, developer groups) to just four.  Not surprisingly, the developers are mostly deep-pocketed heavy hitters.  But we’re additionally pleased by the high caliber...

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