Throwback Thursday: Before We Ever Heard the Word “Spire”
Jul02

Throwback Thursday: Before We Ever Heard the Word “Spire”

When you’ve been publishing a blog as long as we have, you end up with one heck of a photograph archive. Fortunately, the interwebs gave us “Throwback Thursday,” an excuse to re-purpose our snapshots from ten years ago: 2005. Back then this vacant lot at 400 North Lakeshore Drive in Streeterville was just a vacant lot.  It wasn’t famous yet. There were no Calatravian visions of smoke rising from the prairie.  No sales office...

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The Death of a Spire: It’s OK to Grieve.  Again.
Nov05

The Death of a Spire: It’s OK to Grieve. Again.

On you way home tonight, be sure to stop by the local Slurp ‘n’ Burp to pick up the breakfast spread of your choice.  Whether it’s butter, honey, Nutella, or that knockoff Nutella by Hershey’s, you’re going to need lots of it because the Chicago Spire is officially toast. Born in 2007 as the Fordham Spire, the controversial 400 North Lake Shore Drive baby was expected to grow up strong and tall to 2,000...

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Chicago Neverbuilt: Episode 1 — All My Spires
Sep04

Chicago Neverbuilt: Episode 1 — All My Spires

Part of being creative is knowing that not every idea is a slam dunk.  The world’s most famous painters—Rembrandt, Van Gogh, and others— painted over their mistakes.  Similarly, architecture offices around Chicagoland are populated with hundreds, maybe even thousands, of models of buildings that just never got off the ground.  Putting together a skyscraper is a complicated thing, and unless the banks, the developers, the...

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Status Update: The Chicago Spire
Apr11

Status Update: The Chicago Spire

Nope.  Nothing happening...

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Baby Steps Toward The Spire
Mar12

Baby Steps Toward The Spire

The daring, beautiful, controversial, despised, exuberant, loved, hated Chicago Spire took another baby step toward reality in a bankruptcy courtroom yesterday. Crain’s Chicago Business reports that the main parties involved in a three-way tug-of-war over the project have some to an agreement about the site’s short-term future. But the long-term vision is still a little hazy. Garrett Kelleher, the Spire’s most recent...

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What Reviving the Chicago Spire Would Mean to the City of Chicago
Feb17

What Reviving the Chicago Spire Would Mean to the City of Chicago

It was an hour before the announcement on Feb. 6 that the Chicago Spire project was back on. Chicago Architecture Foundation President and CEO Lynn Osmond’s phone rang. It was Spire developer Garrett Kelleher calling to give her the good news. “He said, ‘I just wanted you to know because I know how excited you’ve been about this building.’ He said, ‘I’ve got the bank financing, I’ve got the partner, and we truly believe the market has...

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Back to the Future: Chicago Spire’s Marketing Video Making the Rounds Six Years Later
Feb12

Back to the Future: Chicago Spire’s Marketing Video Making the Rounds Six Years Later

We’re still firmly in the “we’ll believe it when we see it” camp when it comes to all the recent news about the Chicago Spire (400 North Lake Shore Drive).  But that’s not keeping our Twitter and Facebook fans from giddily passing around the Spire’s 2008 marketing video as if it was new. For those of you who aren’t following us on social media (we don’t bite, really!) here’s the...

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Many Happy Words, But is There Really Hope for the Chicago Spire?
Feb09

Many Happy Words, But is There Really Hope for the Chicago Spire?

Years after even the most wistful skyscraper nerd gave up hope on the Chicago Spire, there is suddenly a “bleep” on the patient’s EKG machine. It started with Friday’s report in the Chicago Tribune that the current developer of the project, Shelbourne North Water Street, asked a court to bring in a local partner, and that partner’s $135 million.  The partner is Atlas Apartment Holdings in Northbrook. The...

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