Construction Update
111 West Wacker Sets Itself Apart

111 West Wacker under construction

As panels of skin continue to be applied to 111 West Wacker, we’re starting to see how the building will visually distinguish itself from its neighbors along the Chicago River.

True to the early drawings from friends-of-the-blog Related Midwest, the building sports channels that wrap around the building’s corners.  It’s a nice touch in context. Since its neighbors at 77 West Wacker and the Leo Burnett Building (35 West Wacker) are about the same height, you get to see three very different treatments for what is essentially the same rectangle skyscraper shape.

However, 111 West Wacker (the former Waterview Tower) has a design we’ve seen before.  Back in the early 2000’s there was a dodgy cell phone shop on Lake Street that could get its hands on pretty much anything at a time when merely suggesting the word “unlock” would cause Cingular customer service to hang up on you.  It could even procure a much-coveted Nokia 7260 Trubadurix if you knew the magic word.  It’s been close to a decade since the phone was made, but it’s good to see its styling live on in this building, just a few blocks from where we may or may not have purchased a 7260 in an all-cash, no-questions-asked deal in the alley behind 182 West Lake.

The one on the left is a telephone.

The one on the left is a telephone.



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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1 Comment

  1. Totally unimpressed with the final outcome of this project. I was so excited several years back with the prospect of a 1,047′ tower at this site, but with the demise of the Waterview Tower proposal, so too went the graceful verticality.

    The current and banal design seems plopped upon its site without thought.

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