Oh No! HoJo Demo a Go!

Howard Johnson's motel

The downtown Howard Johnson’s motel when we last saw it in October

If you’re a fan of googie architecture, and mid-century kitsch, get your camera down to 720 North LaSalle before the Chicago’s downtown Howard Johnson’s motel disappears into a cloud of cinderblock dust and memories.

Model of 720 North LaSalle, which will replace the Howard Johnson's motel

Model of 720 North LaSalle, which will replace the Howard Johnson’s motel

A demolition permit has been issued for the long-lived motor lodge, which will soon be replaced by a shiny new skyscraper. The permit, itself, is brief, stark, and unfeeling.  Saying only


The company carrying out the demolition is Heneghan Wrecking, located just down the street near Goose Island.  You may remember it from such demolitions has Rees Hospital and Cabrini Green.

The new building that will replace the HoJo motel is a 38-story residential skyscraper designed by friends-of-the-blog, bKL Architecture, and known in the neighborhood as the “HoJo Tower,” though it is officially sticking to “720 North LaSalle” as its official name.  It is expected to rise 400 feet into the River North skyline and contain 298 residences over 10,000 square feet of ground floor retail space.

Location: 720 North LaSalle Street, River North

Author: Editor

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

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