The Vista Tower (363 East Wacker Drive) — one of Chicago’s near-future showcase pieces — is rising quickly along the main branch of the Chicago River. So quickly that it’s already visible to passing tour boats.
These pictures from Joe Zekas at YoChicago! show not only the Studio Gang-designed building going up, but also the column-free area in the center, where East Upper Wacker Drive will finally be connected to North Harbor Drive and the rest of Lakeshore East by something other than a rusted out stairwell.
Perhaps one of the reasons that Vista is progressing at what seems like a rapid pace is because McHugh Construction has the entire end of Upper East Wacker Drive at its disposal. This used to be a turn-around and staging area for CTA buses, private charter buses, and limos serving Loop hotels. Now it’s a fabrication yard, storage facility, and general utility space.
Also unusual are the Vista building logos on the sides of the two tower cranes. That’s a nice touch we’d like to see on more Chicago construction projects.
While you’re admiring the building progress, keep an eye out for the angled support beams, which are necessary to complete the skyscraper’s unusual design.