The Low Down on a New South Loop High Rise

1345 Wabash and 1333 Wabash drawings courtesy of CMK Development

Left to right: 1333 Wabash and 1345 Wabash. Drawings courtesy of CMK Development

We’re learning more about 1345 South Wabash, the “Mini Me” to 1333 South Wabash, the residential tower CMK Development wants to build in the South Loop.

CMK put the wheels in motion for the 280-foot-tall 1333 South Wabash some time ago, and one of the questions the developers heard very often was, “Why don’t you do something with that ugly, empty lot next door?”

That lot was supposed to be its own residential building, back in the heady days of South Loop real estate. Construction started, but was never finished as the project failed in the mid-2000’s.

When CMK took control of the neighboring property at 1333, the 1345 land was not even on the radar. The owner was not in a selling mood. But that changed recently, and CMK snapped up the sliver of adjacent land. By then, 1333 had already taken on a life of its own and re-developing the entire property as one building would be impractical.

1345 will, quite literally, be built on the foundations of its predecessor. The foundation was put in, so most of what needs to be built is above ground. This will speed the process, but also create some visual and logical disconnects from its big brother to the north.

1345 will have its own parking garage, separate from 1333’s. With three levels of parking on a 73-foot-wide plot, it will have just 90 parking spaces. Some people who live in the area, perhaps new to city living, question if that is enough, but it falls in line with city standards and other recent development trends towards smaller parking garages as certain parts of America enter a post-auto-craze era.

1345 will also be visually similar, but distinct from its sibling at 1333. “We wanted these buildings to have a language that they shared, but we didn’t want one to replicate the other,” says David Brininstool, of Brininstool and Lynch. “They do have commonalities like the use of the glass and a certain kind of definition in the way the base works.”

While the taller building at 1333 features three different types of glass arranged in a random pattern to make it more visible to birds, 1345’s glass skin features a more traditional grid form. And while 1333’s glassiness goes all the way to the ground, its little brother has his own way of distinguishing the residential levels from the parking and retail below.

The distinctions will be obvious to people on the west side of Wabash Avenue, but according to CMK’s Scott Hoskins, should be pretty much invisible to people who are on the east side shopping.

More on 1345:

  • Size: 15 stories
  • Height: 170 feet
  • Floor 1: Parking and retail
  • Floors 2-3: Parking
  • Floors 3-15: Residential
  • Retail space: 1,800 square feet
  • Parking: 90 spaces
  • Parking garage access is via the north-south alley between Wabash and Michigan Avenues
  • Residences: 144, 12 per floor
  • Ceiling height: 10 feet (Nine feet at 1333)
  • Green roofs: On the Wabash and alley sides of the building


Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at

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