Related Midwest Drives an 1,100-Foot-Tall Nail Into The Chicago Spire’s Coffin
May15

Related Midwest Drives an 1,100-Foot-Tall Nail Into The Chicago Spire’s Coffin

If you’ve spent the last eight years waiting for someone to drive the final nail into The Chicago Spire’s coffin, Related Midwest is your carpenter. Tonight the River North real estate developer pulled the cloak off of a duo of towers it plans to erect at the site of Chicago’s most magnificent hole — 400 Lake Shore Drive. 400 is an SOM design crafted by David Childs, known mostly for his work on such New York...

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Alderman Sends Three-Tower Lakeshore East Plan Back to the Drawing Board
Dec13

Alderman Sends Three-Tower Lakeshore East Plan Back to the Drawing Board

Remember that sultry, silvery sliver of a skyscraper that you lusted after during the summer?  Well, the gales of December have blown in, and you can just forget about her. 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly has informed Magellan Development and LendLease that their proposed three-tower plan for completing the northeast corner of Lakeshore East is a non-starter. Mr. Reilly says he received hundreds of comments from his constituents...

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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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What’s Next For Lakeshore East: Pedways, Parks and Pupils
Jun22

What’s Next For Lakeshore East: Pedways, Parks and Pupils

The late mayor Richard J. Daley famously referred to Chicago as “The City That Works.”  The reason the City That Works works at all is because of a complex thicket of paperwork that spells out the rules and procedures for pretty much everything that happens in the city, from the correct size of a parking space on a one-way street with diagonal parking on both sides (17 feet x 9 feet) to the number of parking spaces...

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Lakeshore East Finally Gets A School But Not What It Expected
Jun12

Lakeshore East Finally Gets A School But Not What It Expected

For as long as there have been bulldozers turning dirt in Lakeshore East, there have been neighbors anxiously, even angrily, awaiting the construction of a new public elementary school to once and for all turn the development into a neighborhood. We can report the good news — a school is coming.  And the bad news — It’s not going to be public. One of the hazards of being an urban pioneer is that the promises of...

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Looking at Lakeshore East
Jun08

Looking at Lakeshore East

One of the very first posts we put on this blog almost ten years ago showed the early days of the development of Lakeshore East.  Back then the area that would become downtown Chicago’s newest master planned community was just a big dirt lot as bulldozers transformed a temporary golf course into an urban oasis. But ten years ago is nothing in comparison with the overall time that Lakeshore East has been on the drawing boards....

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Status Update: The Shops at Lakeshore East

It looks like the long-awaited supermarket at Lakeshore East is inching closer to reality. When I moved to LSE in January, 2004 the leasing agents were all excited about the supermarket that would open “within months.” I continued shopping with Peapod, and by the time I left in 2007, there was still nothing but a mud hole where the store was supposed to go. Today I stopped by to see if anything had changed in the year...

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Looking Up Aqua’s Skirt
Jan28

Looking Up Aqua’s Skirt

For the last few years, Aqua (430 East Waterside Drive), the Studio Gang skyscraper that anchors the west end of Lakeshore East, has generated more local and international buzz than pretty much any other new Chicago building.  But most people only admire it from afar. Even those tourists and architectural photographers who make us feel up-close to Aqua while trying to make sense, patterns, and art out of its rows of wavy balconies...

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