Planned Riverside Hotel/Office Tower Design Tweaked, Still Looks Fabulous
Dec17

Planned Riverside Hotel/Office Tower Design Tweaked, Still Looks Fabulous

Remember that plan from three years ago where someone wanted to wedge yet another hotel in along the Chicago River?  Well, that someone is still pounding away at it. August 2016 rendering of 322 North Clark The plan for 322 North Clark Street was to jam a 369-foot-tall HKS-designed hotel into the surface parking lot behind the Reid Murdoch Building.  The proposal was floated by Friedman Properties and included 500 hotel rooms, 85,000...

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Odd Chicago Zoning Rule Says No to Skyscraper, Yes to Typewriter Repair Shop
Dec12

Odd Chicago Zoning Rule Says No to Skyscraper, Yes to Typewriter Repair Shop

The history of Chicago is written in its zoning rules.  Leafing through the pages you get a sense of how successive generations used the letter of the law to shape the ways in which the city would grow and change. Since both history and urban planning are messy affairs, it’s not surprising to find grains of sand in these oysters of wisdom.  One of them surfaced recently at 401 North State Street, where the parking garage is...

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Abandoned Two-Story School To Become Eight-Story Hotel
Nov18

Abandoned Two-Story School To Become Eight-Story Hotel

Back when Chicago’s Immaculate Conception parish and Saint Joseph parish were individual communities, there was a school on the corner of Orleans and Hill Streets, next to Cabrini Green.  Saint Joseph School at 1035 North Orleans Street closed almost a decade ago, but a real estate developer is trying to re-open it as a hotel. 1035 North Orleans Street (via Apple Maps) The conversion involves adding six stories on top of the...

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OHC Photos: Wrigley Building
Nov07

OHC Photos: Wrigley Building

Small things can beget greatness. Look at the humble stick of chewing gum, which gave us the magnificent Wrigley Building. Jennifer Mishra of Wits End Photography got a chance to wander around the terra cotta gingerbread castle during the Chicago Architecture Center’s Open House Chicago event, and shared these photographs. (And if your building’s sidewalk is polka-dotted with black ovals of discarded flavor, this is a...

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Newberry Library Getting a 34-Story Bookend
Oct07

Newberry Library Getting a 34-Story Bookend

For the last 16 years, we’ve gloated every time a surface parking lot was erased from downtown Chicago.  Now it looks like a parking garage is about to meet that Great Urban Planner in the Sky, and we’re not sure how to feel about it. October 2019 rendering of 40 West Oak Street The garage in question serves the Warren Barr Pavilion, the mostly anonymous nursing home with the tony address of 66 West Oak Street in...

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No More Condos, New North Building Has a New Plan: Airbnb-Style Hotel
Sep16

No More Condos, New North Building Has a New Plan: Airbnb-Style Hotel

If you were worried that you wouldn’t be able to afford to lay your head in the swishy new luxury condominium building planned for 61 West Erie Street, there’s good news.  You may be able to pay by the day. September 2019 rendering of 61 West Erie. (via the Office of Alderman Brendan Reilly.) According to 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly, LG Development has ditched its plan to put up a 12-story residential block, and is...

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Small Apartments Making Big Progress on Clark Street
Nov12

Small Apartments Making Big Progress on Clark Street

The 800 block of North Clark Street seems like it’s been under construction since cows trotted along the LaSalle Street cattle path in The Loop. First it was the Bush Temple of Music at number 800 being renovated into apartments.  Then it was the LDS building being erected at number 816.  Now things are popping at 810 North Clark, where a mid-rise apartment building is going in from the same people who brought us the revamped...

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See How Chicago Grows
Nov06

See How Chicago Grows

It’s no secret that Chicago’s Near North side has grown by leaps and bounds over the last five years.  But how do you show that visually? Some people try maps.  Some use charts.  Others write long-winded blog posts that seemingly have nothing to do with the topic at hand. (Guilty!)  But Joe Zekas over at YoChicago! has a better way: A single photograph. Well, it’s actually two photographs.  One taken in 2013, and...

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Downtown Chicago Could Get 11 New Skyscrapers This Week
Oct15

Downtown Chicago Could Get 11 New Skyscrapers This Week

If there’s a skyscraper nerd in your office, don’t be surprised if he calls in sick on Thursday.  That’s the day the Chicago Plan Commission considers the largest number of new skyscrapers for downtown Chicago since August of 2014, when four new towers were on the docket. This time, there are 11 major buildings in play: 700 at the River in River West 1,500 total residences 497 car parking spaces Total FAR: 8.1...

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808 Wells is Back — Shorter, Wider, and With a New Name: AMLI 808
Oct02

808 Wells is Back — Shorter, Wider, and With a New Name: AMLI 808

If you don’t remember us reporting on 808 Wells years ago, that’s OK.  This one’s been a long time coming. We last mentioned 808 more than two years ago, when a sales office popped up in the Near North neighborhood. Now called “AMLI 808,” the apartment building has appeared in the Chicago City Clerk’s office, which means its developers are serious about moving forward. This time around, it’s...

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