John Buck Company’s new office tower at 151 North Franklin Street is about to become reality.
The Walgreen’s store that currently occupies the lot at the corner of West Randolph Street and North Franklin closes for good at 5:00pm today. Employees confirm it is being torn down to make way for the new skyscraper.
Loop Spy Dan went by there yesterday and talked to some construction-looking workers who also confirmed that demolition was imminent. Then today he sent in photos of the city’s public notice posters.
We last reported on 151 North Franklin back in December of 2013 when it had its public hearing. In spite of the generous spread put out by Mr. Buck’s company, the cold kept many people away. There wasn’t much neighborhood opposition to the project because hardly anyone actually lives near that location, and most of the views impacted will be from other office buildings. The city approved the skyscraper in April.
Architect John Ronan took pains to point out that the entryway and public space for 151 North Franklin was specifically designed to relate to its sister building across Franklin street at 155 North Wacker Drive. The two buildings framing 155’s pocket park, he hoped, would create a vibrant public space spanning two city blocks. He even spoke of office workers gathering on the steps under the entryway of 151 with their laptops to have meetings al fresco.
Now we’ll get a chance to see if his vision comes true. Keep an eye out for demolition equipment. Word on the street from Loop Spy Dan is that construction of the new building could begin as soon as the Fall.
Here’s the details:
- Developer: John Buck Company
- Architect: John Ronan
- Architecture firm: John Ronan Architects
- Floor space: 879,116 square feet
- Parking spaces: 34 (underground)
- Loading docks: 4 (off of West Couch Place)
- Building height: 600 feet*
- Green roof alert!
- Green roof size: 5,217 square feet
- Lower level garden size: 540 square feet
*600 feet seems really tall for a 36-story building, but that’s what’s in the paperwork repeatedly. For comparison, if this was a residential building, 600 feet would be a 59 or 60-story building.