Another Vintage Loop Office Building Going Residential
Jun06

Another Vintage Loop Office Building Going Residential

In an accelerating trend, another vintage Loop office building is going to briefcases to breakfast nooks. Crain’s Chicago Business reports that The Hartman Building at 30 East Adams Street, designed by Alfred S. Alschuler, has been sold and is going to be converted by Cedar Street Companies.  You may remember Cedar Street from such adaptive reuses as the Wilson Avenue Theater in Uptown, and the Bush Temple of Music in Near...

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1333 South Wabash Catches, Passes Older Sibling Next Door
Apr08

1333 South Wabash Catches, Passes Older Sibling Next Door

It seems CMK Companies‘ rental tower at 1333 South Wabash Avenue never gave its next-door neighbor a chance to be the big kid on the block. No sooner was 1345 Wabash completed and taking on residents, 1333 Wabash was digging its own heels into the South Loop soil just a few feet to the north. And already, it’s grown taller. It’s even got some glass goin’ on already. 1333 Wabash is a Brininstool + Lynch design...

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With 1345 Wabash Complete, 1333 Shifts Into High Gear
Aug20

With 1345 Wabash Complete, 1333 Shifts Into High Gear

Now that CMK Companies‘ 1345 Wabash tower (1345 South Wabash Avenue) is ready to accept residents, workers are earnestly changing the landscape next door at 1333 South Wabash for the accompanying structure. The Brininstool+Lynch design is being fitted into a hole intended for a  previously-endeavored development that never got out of the ground. When complete, the 28-story tower will rise 276 feet into the South Loop sky. But...

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Wabash Art Gets The Green Light — and Blue and Orange and Yellow…
Jul28

Wabash Art Gets The Green Light — and Blue and Orange and Yellow…

The ambitious and inspirational art project that seeks to line the underside of the CTA L tracks on Wabash Avenue with multi-colored lights is going to get a test.  Thanks to almost $60,000 donated by nearly a thousand people through a Kickstarter campaign, the CTA and CDOT will allow artists Jack Newell and Seth Unger to install light tubes on a small test section of the street. The plan is to install the test between Monroe and...

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Forget the Shovel, This New Highrise Needs a Shoehorn
May11

Forget the Shovel, This New Highrise Needs a Shoehorn

Not that many years ago, when this blog was just a toddler, the corner of North Wabash Avenue and Lower East North Water Street was a place where you’d go to hide from the world, get a cheap hamburger, and read the bulldog edition of the Sun-Times while trains crept by and the air filled with the smell of diesel and ink. The corner still exists, but the hamburger stand is in limbo.  The trains no longer roll through.  And the...

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Status Update: 1333 and 1345 South Wabash
Apr10

Status Update: 1333 and 1345 South Wabash

It’s been a while since we checked in on the pair of residential buildings going up at 1333 and 1345 South Wabash Avenue in the South Loop.  You’ll remember that both are being developed by CMK Companies, but not simultaneously.  When CMK acquired the 1333 property, the owner of 1345 didn’t feel like selling his lot.  And by the time he came around, 1333 was already well underway, so 1345 will have to be a 15-story...

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Wabash Avenue Gets a 12-Step Plan to Recovery
Mar02

Wabash Avenue Gets a 12-Step Plan to Recovery

It’s no secret that Wabash Avenue in the Loop needs help. It is a dark, loud, imposing, and occasionally menacing streak running through the heart of Chicago’s tourist district. Its physical ills are a psychological barrier that keep tourists and their tourist dollars from flowing between Millennium Park/Michigan Avenue and the State Street corridor. There have been several attempts to clean up Wabash in recent years,...

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Virgin Hotel Chicago Officially a Thing
Dec22

Virgin Hotel Chicago Officially a Thing

Congratulations to the Virgin Hotel Chicago, for actually starting to exist. For more than two years now, we’ve chronicled the transformation of the former Dearborn Bank Building at 203 North Wabash Avenue into the world’s first Virgin Hotel.  The first reservations are being taken for January 15th, 2015, though we’ve been told that the hotel will be open in December, so perhaps it’s already welcoming visitors?...

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Totally Tubular! Chicago Art Aficionados Go Gaga For Wabash Lights
Oct31

Totally Tubular! Chicago Art Aficionados Go Gaga For Wabash Lights

It smells of diesel. Weird stuff drips down from it. The noise is unnerving every few minutes. I’m referring, of course, to the CTA elevated train tracks in the Loop. For tourists and locals alike, walking under the L tracks may not seem like strolling through a field of daisies. Jack Newell, Seth Unger and Justin Wardell aim to change that. They are the brains behind The Wabash Lights. It’s a bold public art initiative using light as...

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Emanuel Trying to Keep Chicago From Being Trumped Again
Sep29

Emanuel Trying to Keep Chicago From Being Trumped Again

Without a doubt, Donald Trump has put his stamp on Chicago thanks to the giant Trump sign adorning his namesake Trump International Hotel and Tower. Love it or despise it, the signage on the second-tallest building in the city is here to stay since both the city zoning committee and City Council signed off on it. However, in order to make sure such a loud statement is never again featured so brazenly along the Chicago River, Mayor...

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