As real estate developers position themselves for an economic recovery, more and more mothballed Chicago projects are being pulled out of the back of the closet, shaken out, stretched, and tried on to see if they still fit.
The latest project to come back to life smelling of grandmother’s house may be the 50-story hotel tower planned for 150 East Ontario Street.
Loop Spy Ryan was doing some Christmas shopping on the Magnificent Mile when his spidey-senses went off and he detoured down East Ontario Street. There he found demolition crews pulling down the buildings at 154, 158, and 160 East Ontario and texted us some pictures.
We dug through the city records and found that demolition permits were issued for these buildings September 13th, and the owner of the property is still listed as Ontario Hotel Development, LLC out in Oak Park.
So what’s Ontario Hotel Development up to? Could it, possibly, be developing a hotel on Ontario?
Maybe. But if it is, it still has a lot of paperwork to go through. Currently, the property is zoned DX-12, which means that a building in that location would likely be between 12 and 30 stories tall, not the 50 planned by the previous developer, Monaco Development.
Monaco had visions of a 50-story building with 330 hotel rooms and 20 condominiums. A Crain’s Chicago Business article from January, 2008 is the last anyone’s heard out of the project. In that article, Monaco claimed that the city had already signed off on the tower. But if that was still true, the property would have a PD designation, not a DX.
It appears that Monaco is no longer involved with this project. So, who is? It appears to be a company called 150 East Ontario Acquisitions. It was formed in 2006 and appears to be a going concern, having filed paperwork with the Illinois Secretary of State’s office just this past September. But it’s run out of a condo on the 13th floor of 110 East Delaware Place. Similar records point to a bunch of real estate lawyers, but nothing concrete at this point.
We’ll keep digging and let you know what we find.