Aon Center Elevator Attraction Looks Like A Go
Dec17

Aon Center Elevator Attraction Looks Like A Go

Late this week the Chicago Plan Commission is expected to vote on whether to allow the new owners of the Aon Center to clamp a glass elevator to the northwest corner of the city’s third-tallest building and put a thrill ride on the roof. If you’re not into that whole “waiting for stuff to happen” thing, here are some tea leaves for you to read: It’s gonna happen. How can we prognosticate in such an...

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Every Web Page About the Aon Center is About to Become Wrong
Nov12

Every Web Page About the Aon Center is About to Become Wrong

If you’re a fan of Wikipedia, the wannabe encyclopedia that’s the equivalent of asking a bunch of strangers at a bus stop to do your homework, it will soon need to be updated.  Along with the 8,643 other web sites that catalog skyscraper heights. Right now, the Aon Center’s “architectural height” is 1,136 feet.  That means to the top of the mechanical room that hides all of the HVAC equipment.  That space...

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Aon Center is the Latest Skyscraper That Wants to Take You For a Ride
May15

Aon Center is the Latest Skyscraper That Wants to Take You For a Ride

If you want to “hang” at the Aon Center, 601W Companies is cool with that.  As long as you do it in its proposed 22-person glass pod hanging off the roof.  The New York real estate company has unveiled its $185 million proposal for turning a portion of Chicago’s third-tallest building into a tourist attraction. We’ve known since 601W bought the stoic skyscraper in 2015 for $173 million that it thought there was...

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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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What Apple Thinks of Chicago’s Architecture
Mar28

What Apple Thinks of Chicago’s Architecture

Unless you also blew away every one of your news apps while you were deleting Facebook over the weekend, you know that Apple held a town hall meeting in Chicago.  One of a very few that have ever been taken outside of northern California. The event was held at Lane Tech High School in North Center, a school known for producing everything from scientists to TV news anchors in abundance. During its presentation, Apple paid homage to the...

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Aon Center Views Will Start Before You Even Reach the New Observation Deck
Feb26

Aon Center Views Will Start Before You Even Reach the New Observation Deck

It was back in 2015 that we told you the Aon Center (200 East Randolph Street) is going to convert its 83rd floor into a public observation deck. At the time we wondered how the building would handle a sudden influx of thousands of daily tourists.  The skyscraper has very tight security in its lobby area, and the notion of letting tourists share the elevator banks with office workers seemed like a non-starter. Now the Chicago Tribune...

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Aon Center And Prudential Plaza Offer Great Views Of The Loop And Downtown
Dec31

Aon Center And Prudential Plaza Offer Great Views Of The Loop And Downtown

We end 2015 featuring a pair of venerable downtown buildings that offered visitors million dollar views during this year’s Open House Chicago, hosted by the Chicago Architecture Foundation. Those two buildings, the Aon Center (at 200 East Randolph Street) and its next-door neighbor Prudential Plaza (at 130 East Randolph Street), have far different exterior styles. One thing they have in common is an excellent view of Millennium...

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Open House Chicago Popularity Soars With Huge Increase During 2015 Event
Dec01

Open House Chicago Popularity Soars With Huge Increase During 2015 Event

The 2015 edition of Chicago’s annual architecture festival was more popular than ever. Open House Chicago, the October 17-18 event orchestrated by the Chicago Architecture Foundation, offered up a cornucopia of architectural treasures for visitors to see up close. The Foundation provided us with the final statistics for this year’s OHC: There were 85,000 attendees. They made 320,000 visits. That is a 13% increase in traffic over the...

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Aon Center Getting an Observatory. Here’s What the Views Will Look Like
Nov10

Aon Center Getting an Observatory. Here’s What the Views Will Look Like

Four months ago Crain’s Chicago Business reported that at least one of the companies considering buying the then-for-sale Aon Center (200 East Randolph Street) was considering adding an observatory to the 83-story building.  At the time critics were critical, saying that the building’s vertical fins wouldn’t allow for very good views, and that it was a bad location that couldn’t compete with the observatories...

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Status Update: WAY UP-dates
Oct23

Status Update: WAY UP-dates

We’ve already told you our feelings on Aon Center stealing the show at Open House Chicago 2015. One of our favorite features of Aon’s 71st-floor vantage point, as well as the one high atop the Kemper Building‘s 41st-floor observation deck (new windows!) was being able to look out across the city and check on the progress of several construction projects. It’s one thing to stand at street level and look up to...

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