Stalled South Loop Skyscraper Restarts
Nov09

Stalled South Loop Skyscraper Restarts

Work appears to have resumed on the 74-story residential skyscraper planned to rise at 1000 South Michigan Avenue in the South Loop. Construction on the Helmut Jahn-designed 1000M was paused for a while, leading to a lot of speculation from speculators who like to speculate about its future. Construction at 1000M in August 2020 (Courtesy of YoChicago!) That future got a little brighter a couple of weeks ago, when the City of Chicago...

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Do We Smell a New Residential Tower in Printer’s Row?
Nov01

Do We Smell a New Residential Tower in Printer’s Row?

You know that surface parking lot in the South Loop at the intersection of Harrison and Dearborn that trashes the urban fabric and density of Printer’s Row? We think it’s going away. The surface parking lot at 611 South Dearborn Street, across the street from the Transportation Building. (Via Apple Maps) We’re not sure what the plans are for 611 South Dearborn Street just yet. But an interesting letter went out from...

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Top 10 Picks for Open House Chicago 2021
Oct15

Top 10 Picks for Open House Chicago 2021

With Chicago’s COVID positivity rate at about the same potency as three-two beer, you may be thinking about zipping off your Tyvek suit and sniffing around a perfect Autumn weekend in Chicago. If so, we recommend grabbing a pumpkin spice whatever and downloading the app for Open House Chicago 2021 (Apple | Android). These are our picks for this annual architecture festival. You can click on the addresses to open a map for easy...

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Chicago’s 2nd Presbyterian Gets Fed Help to Save Mural
Oct13

Chicago’s 2nd Presbyterian Gets Fed Help to Save Mural

If you’ve ever toddled down Michigan Avenue to Second Presbyterian Church, whether to bend a knee or just to attend a community function, you probably noticed one of its greatest hits: The Tree of Life. Tree of Life mural. (Courtesy of Second Presbyterian Church) In a church stuffed with glorious art, the Tree of Life mural still stands out.  The brushwork and leaf of Frederic Clay Bartlett, it’s 30 feet tall and 40 feet...

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A Reed Sprouts Along the Chicago River’s Southbank
Sep19

A Reed Sprouts Along the Chicago River’s Southbank

It’s been a good year for apartment balcony gardens like mine. Though I didn’t try pumpkins, watermelon, or corn this year (all successful in previous years), the flowers are flowering, the hummingbirds are humming, and the ornamental grass successfully conceals the brick wall of the neighboring building. Also playing James Crockett in his victory garden is .oz concern Lendlease, which recently planted a building called...

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South Loop Getting New Apartment + Hotel Complex
Sep06

South Loop Getting New Apartment + Hotel Complex

The Chicago Plan Commission has donned its mitre, picked up its crosier, and bestowed its blessings on a new mixed-use development in Chicago’s South Loop. August, 2021 rendering of 525 South Wabash. Oddly-titled developer e-Terra+ is the name behind the project which bears the BKV Group monogram, and will land 777 apartments and 314 hotel rooms in a two-tower complex that will ace a low-end parking place, and wrap around the...

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City Approves Hight Cut for Michigan Avenue Skyscraper
May02

City Approves Hight Cut for Michigan Avenue Skyscraper

Back in February of this year, we told you that the people behind 1000M wanted to make yet another change to their plan to erect a fancy new Helmut Jahn-designed skyscraper at 1000 South Michigan Avenue. Now the City of Chicago is on board with those changes. June 2017 Rendering of 1000M (Courtesy of Time Equities) Recently, the Chicago Department of Planning and Development sent a letter to the lawyers for 1000M letting them know...

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South Loop Church’s Massive Tiffany Window Goes Out For Repairs
Apr04

South Loop Church’s Massive Tiffany Window Goes Out For Repairs

At a time when too many of Chicago’s holy places are being abandoned, or worse, we bring you a good news story out of the South Loop. The enormous Tiffany window at Second Presbyterian Church has been removed for conservation. Stained glass window being removed from Second Presbyterian Church in March, 2021. (Courtesy of Friends of Historic Second Church.) Thousands of people have admired the 16-foot-tall window during services,...

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Enormous South Loop Project Gets Pro Forma Pushback From City
Mar28

Enormous South Loop Project Gets Pro Forma Pushback From City

On the surface, real estate development looks like a runaway rocket sled to the moon.  In reality, it’s more like an awkward fifth-grade dance, with a lot of to-ing and fro-ing, and people in uncomfortable shoes sweating through their shirts while praying they don’t fall down in public. January 2021 diagram of One Central (via City of Chicago) Such is the situation at One Central, the nine-skyscrapered mega...

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South Loop Apartment Plan Back in the Cupboard with the Mothballs
Feb20

South Loop Apartment Plan Back in the Cupboard with the Mothballs

If you were excited about the transformation of a South Loop surface parking lot into a pair of modest skyscrapers with a hotel and supermarket, you picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue. December, 2020 rendering of 525 South Wabash (Courtesy of BKV Group) In a memo to his constituents, 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly conveyed the news that the developer of 525 South Wabash Avenue, e-Terra+, has decided to pull its project...

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