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 / 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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Developers Detail Big Big Big Plans for Lakeshore East
Jul11

Developers Detail Big Big Big Plans for Lakeshore East

After weeks of anticipation, skyscraper nerds, architecture enthusiasts, and the just plain curious got the information they’ve been craving about how the development of Lakeshore East will end.  The answer: With an 875-foot-tall bang. At a crowded public meeting at the Hyatt Regency, hosted by 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly, architects and developers took the wraps off of two major projects: The final three skyscrapers...

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Lakeshore East Moving Forward, Losing a Skyscraper
Jun26

Lakeshore East Moving Forward, Losing a Skyscraper

One of the first long-form articles we published in Chicago Architecture way back in October of 2003 was a preview of Lakeshore East.  Back then, the only building that had been erected was The Lancaster at 201 North Westshore Drive.  The rest of Lakeshore East was dirt and weeds and a former caddyshack that still sported a small luncheonette that refused to die. My how things have changed. From the curvalicious skyscraper that put...

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Status Update: O Still No
Apr09

Status Update: O Still No

With all the hubbub and hullabaloo surrounding next week’s public meeting about the Wanda Tower (381 East Wacker Drive), and with the GEMS Academy’s second classroom building officially underway next door, we thought we’d remind you that there’s another major project ready to bud this spring along the carefully manicured grounds of Lakeshore East: Building O. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Daniel Schell...

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“O” No! Downtown Skyscraper Could Hit the Skids Because of Feds
Feb03

“O” No! Downtown Skyscraper Could Hit the Skids Because of Feds

Building O (195 North Columbus Drive), the Sybil of downtown Chicago skyscraper projects, may be delayed by a bit of intrigue playing out in our nation’s capital. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, the building which consists of two hotels and a residential block, was going to be financed through the federal government’s EB-5 program.   But now that program is coming under fire from not only the General Accounting Office,...

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The Story of O: Three Buildings in One
Oct23

The Story of O: Three Buildings in One

Chicago is a city of Big O’s. Entertainment had its Oprah. Politics has its Obama. And architecture has Lakeshore East Building O. Since we broke the news of Building O (201 North Columbus Drive) several weeks ago, there has been a lot of interest in what it will become. The time has arrived to spill some beans. The 642-foot-tall building is broken into four components. At the base are a pair of hotel lobbies, a residential lobby, and...

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“O” Yeah: Lakeshore East Getting Yet Another Huge Skyscraper
Oct02

“O” Yeah: Lakeshore East Getting Yet Another Huge Skyscraper

For almost two years I’ve been chasing a ghost.  I’ve seen glimpses of it.  Drawings.  Sketches.  A hint here, an accidentally dropped statistic there.  Some meaningful “no comments” from just the right people. Papers on a desk quickly covered up if I glanced at them too long.  Like a fat, bearded hillbilly chasing Bigfoot on basic cable, I’ve been convinced it’s real, even when other people told me...

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