Another Downtown Parking Lot About to Bite The Dust

When we started this publication 16 years ago, one of the questions we were often asked is why there were so many surface parking lots in downtown Chicago.

The reasons are complex, ranging from people banking land to sell when it inevitably becomes worth more, to Chicago being less space constrained than cities like New York and London, so car adoption was higher. There are others, but research we did about a decade ago showed that some of downtown Chicago’s parking lots were parking lots as far back as the 1930’s.

Rendering of 450 North LaSalle
Rendering of 450 North LaSalle

But that doesn’t mean we like surface parking lots. Which is why it was with a modicum of rejoicing that we learned that the surface parking lot at the southwest corner of LaSalle and Illinois is going bye-bye.

Forty-second Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly delivered the news to his constituents that the property at 450 North LaSalle is going to become an office building.

It’s not the tallest, flashiest, most compelling development we’ve seen in Chicago recently. But it’s another office building replacing a parking lot, so we broke out the last of the New Year’s Eve party poppers and made a mess that clogged up the Roomba.

Rendering of 450 North LaSalle
Rendering of 450 North LaSalle

Midwest Property Group in River North is the developer of this project. You may remember it from 200 Squared in The Loop. The design is by The Lamar Johnson Collaborative in West Town. It’s working on such projects as the repurposing of the old Morton Salt shed, and the Greyhound lot on Goose Island.

  • Address: 450-488 North LaSalle Street
  • Developer: Midwest Property Group
  • Architecture firm: The Lamar Johnson Collaborative
  • Retail space: 7,200 square feet (approximate)
  • Stories: 14
  • Maximum height: 188 feet
  • Maximum length: 163 feet, nine inches
  • Maximum width: 101 feet
  • Size: 186,081 square feet
  • Office access: via North LaSalle Street
  • Automobile parking: none
  • Bicycle parking: 50 spaces
  • Green roof: 2,600 square feet

Location: 450 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

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