A Look at the Chicago Union Station Renovation
Jun28

A Look at the Chicago Union Station Renovation

If you’ve spent any time in the West Loop, you may have had a chance to completely ignore the western side of Union Station. Whether you were rushing to get the 125 bus, headed to Beggar’s for a slice of pepperoni and a nice side salad, or hoofing it across the Kennedy for a little after-work nightlife, there are plenty of reasons to never look at the western facade of this building. Chicago Union Station (File) Since a...

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BMO Tower Starts to Rise in the West Loop
Jun28

BMO Tower Starts to Rise in the West Loop

Commuters returning to Chicago from the suburbs after The Great Pause will hear some familiar sounds as they emerge from Union Station. The scraping of steel against stone. The squealing of metal tracked vehicles. The occasional Very Loud Bang™ echoing through the canyons of the West Loop. All these noises and more are on offer right next to the train station, at 320 South Canal Street. BMO Tower under construction (June 2020....

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BMO Tower Construction Update
Apr30

BMO Tower Construction Update

If your daily commute used to take you through Union Station, you might wonder what’s going on with the BMO Tower under construction across the street.  Well, wonder no more my home-bound friend.  We’ve got your virtual back. BMO Tower construction in April 2020 (Courtesy of YoChicago!) YoChicago! sent in the photograph above showing construction progress on the skyscraper at 320 South Canal Street. OK, so there’s...

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B-Hold the B-Musing B-MO Tower B-Coming B-Yootiful
Mar10

B-Hold the B-Musing B-MO Tower B-Coming B-Yootiful

If Union Station seems a little noisier than usual these days, it’s not just because the 6:30 Metra from Downers Grove is crammed with armchair pitching coaches who just won’t shut up about the White Sox chances this season.  It’s because of the massive BMO Tower going up across the street. BMO Tower under construction in March 2020 (Courtesy of Loop Spy Jody) Loop Spy Jody cracked a pre-season bat sending the...

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West Loop Skyscraper to Add Height, Scrape More Sky
Feb20

West Loop Skyscraper to Add Height, Scrape More Sky

If your office seems a little devoid of architecture nerds this morning, it might be because the density junkies in the crowd are sleeping one off in the Pedway under a pile of Red Eyes, with a thoroughly gnawed copy of Zoning Application 20348 clenched in their drooling jaws. 2019 rendering of BMO Tower, formerly Union Station Tower. (Courtesy of Goettsch Partners.) 20348 got updated yesterday with a request from Convexity Partners...

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The Union Station Tower is Finally Real
Dec24

The Union Station Tower is Finally Real

For as long as anyone can remember, it’s been lots of discussion but no digging in the West Loop where Amtrak has wanted to add a skyscraper to the Union Station complex since before Amtrak was a thing.  In the last 15 years, we’ve seen at least three different plans for Amtrak skyscrapers that simply never got off the ground.  But that has finally changed. 2019 rendering of BMO Tower, formerly Union Station...

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Loop Plot Zoned For a 600-Foot Tower Getting a 140-foot Hotel
Jun02

Loop Plot Zoned For a 600-Foot Tower Getting a 140-foot Hotel

There was a time when we’d sit in the Starbucks in the Hotel Allegro, write stories about architecture, and gaze through the rain wondering what might become of the surface parking lot next to the wonderful Randolph Tower (188 West Randolph Street). 180 West Randolph Street The wondering is now over, as 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly has told his constituents that the West Loop’s Convexity Properties wants to put up a...

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Details of Union Station Renovation Show Potential, Complexity
Dec05

Details of Union Station Renovation Show Potential, Complexity

We’re learning more of the nitty-gritty details involved in the Union Station redevelopment recently approved by the City of Chicago. A lot of it is just numbers and trivia, but a few things stand out. The former Harvey House at Union Station will be renovated into a new entrance to the Great Hall from South Clinton Street.  But it will also have plenty of leasable retail space.  Hopefully this space will end up being another...

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Union Station Redev Dumps Ugly Hat, Gains Pretty Tower
Sep12

Union Station Redev Dumps Ugly Hat, Gains Pretty Tower

The latest plan to turn Chicago Union Station into more than what it currently is has a lot of people breathing a sigh of relief. Riverside Investment and Development, and Convexity Properties dished their new plan for the historic property last night, and it’s a significant improvement over what was previously on offer. The June version of this project featured an ugly, square hat sitting on top of the the city’s best...

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Devs Try To Get Union Station Project Back On Track
Sep04

Devs Try To Get Union Station Project Back On Track

Remember back in June when plans to redevelop Union Station came out and you were all, “Haven’t we been to this dance before?”  Well, you were right to be skeptical. Riverside Investment and Development, and Convexity Properties are back with a new redevelopment plan for Union Station.  A move necessitated by 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly, who roundfiled the previous proposal. In that plan, a seven-story glass...

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