Vista Tower Scrapes Sky In Lakeshore East, Windows Going In
Oct22

Vista Tower Scrapes Sky In Lakeshore East, Windows Going In

If you’ve been wondering about Magellan Development’s Vista Tower lately — and we know you have — word on the street is that things are progressing nicely. The Studio Gang-designed residential and hotel tower, which will absolutely positively not look anything at all like three adjacent stacks of Chinese take-out boxes, is already tall enough to look down on former Lakeshore East belle of the ball, Aqua.  Aqua was designed...

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You Get a Skyscraper! And You Get a Skyscraper!
Oct18

You Get a Skyscraper! And You Get a Skyscraper!

In its most Oprah-riffic maneuver since the great Skyscraper-palooza of 2014, the Chicago Plan Commission approved a slew of new skyscrapers for the Windy City. In a series of votes today, the commission approved plans for 18 new towers for downtown Chicago.  To put that into a completely inaccurate and meaningless comparison, it’s like Chicago just got Indianapolis added to its skyscraper menagerie. 700 at the River The Plan...

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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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O, My — Combo Tower to Finish Lakeshore East Puzzle, Expand Pedway
Oct01

O, My — Combo Tower to Finish Lakeshore East Puzzle, Expand Pedway

If you’ve ever spent a rainy winter’s eve listening to gospel music on a distant AM radio station, drinking Mr. Pibb out of a Mason jar while putting together a Nancy Drew jigsaw puzzle from Goodwill because your girlfriend left you and took both the dog and the TV remote, then you know the satisfaction that can be found in finally fitting that last cardboard squiggle in place, sealing the edges with your index finger, and...

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Lakeshore East Tower Trio Tipped in Text
Sep24

Lakeshore East Tower Trio Tipped in Text

It looks like the plan to build three new skyscrapers in the northeast corner of Lakeshore East is getting ready to move forward. Ordinance number 2018-7759 has been filed with the city’s zoning committee.  The contents of the ordinance have not been made public as of this writing, but it is a request to re-zone the land where Magellan Development and LendLease plan to erect three new bKL-designed skyscrapers, almost completing...

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Revised Lakeshore East Plan is More Green and More of the Same [updated]
Aug29

Revised Lakeshore East Plan is More Green and More of the Same [updated]

The proposal to erect three new skyscrapers in the northeast corner of Lakeshore East took another step forward tonight. At the second public meeting about the project from Magellan Development and Lendlease, a revised plan received acknowledging nods, and not much else.  But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. When the first iteration was voilàed last July, few credible people had anything bad to say about bKL...

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Swissôtel’s Awkward Protrusion to Get Bigger
Aug28

Swissôtel’s Awkward Protrusion to Get Bigger

Since Lakeshore East is in the news this week, here’s a little nugget of neighbor news: The Swissôtel at 323 East Wacker Drive is getting a small expansion. If you’ve ever walked by the hotel, you may have noticed the awkward outdoor seating area next to the slightly-less-awkward annex that houses The Palm restaurant. That outdoor seating area is going away, to be replaced by an annex to the annex to the hotel in order to...

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♫ Lakeshore East / It Has a Plan / I-J-K-L-O ♫
Aug27

♫ Lakeshore East / It Has a Plan / I-J-K-L-O ♫

Channel your inner four-year-old, and sing along. Lakeshore East, it has a plan I – J – K – L – O And to this plan, were drawn some NIMBYS I – J – K – L – O With a “view” “view” here And a “school” “school” there Here a critic, there a critic Everyone’s a civic cynic Lakeshore East, it has a plan I – J – K – L...

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Aon Center’s Glass Elevator-to-the-Sky to be Unveiled Tonight
May14

Aon Center’s Glass Elevator-to-the-Sky to be Unveiled Tonight

Glass as an amusement is a big thing these days.  It seems to have started with that glass bridge over the Grand Canyon on the Hualapai reservation in Arizona. Now we have a glass slide at the top of the U.S. Bank Building in Los Angeles.  The glass “ledges” at the top of the Willis Tower. The glass “tilt” mechanism at the top of 875 North Michigan.  And now the Aon Center is getting in on the transparent...

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GEMS Upper School Gets More Permits
Feb12

GEMS Upper School Gets More Permits

The second GEMS World Academy (355 East Wacker Drive) school building in Lakeshore East has been given the green light to start another round of construction.  The City of Chicago has issued permits to start work on the part of the bKL Architecture project that you might actually see. FOUNDATION AND SUPERSTRUCTURE FROM LOWER WACKER TO UPPER WACKER TO INCLUDE UNDERSLAB PLUMBING FOR PROPOSED 13-STORY GRADE 8 – 12 SCHOOL.  CAISSON...

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