What’s Underneath Chicago’s Urban Parks? Disappointment, If You’re a Worm
Jan17

What’s Underneath Chicago’s Urban Parks? Disappointment, If You’re a Worm

It’s always fun to listen in to tourists at Millennium Park ooh-ing and aah-ing at the amazing job the City of Chicago has done preserving such a large slice of nature in the heart of the city. The vast majority of them don’t know that underneath the wild-looking flowerbeds, the stately lawns, and the carefully channeled rivulet is a vast parking garage, and a commuter train station. But that’s OK. They came to...

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Two New Loop Skyscrapers Top Off
Jan14

Two New Loop Skyscrapers Top Off

While the bulk of the architectural press in Chicago has been focused on the St. Regis Chicago tower, just a block away two other skyscrapers have been quietly growing in its shadow. Well, “quietly,” unless you live in Lakeshore East, which has been under constant development since we started publishing way back in 2003. But such are the perils of urban living. January, 2021 rendering of Cirrus (Courtesy of Lendlease)...

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Downtown Chicago Fertile Ground for Mechanical Beanstalks
Oct26

Downtown Chicago Fertile Ground for Mechanical Beanstalks

If you’re going to get jumped in downtown Chicago, try to be a crane. Cirrus and Cascade under construction (Courtesy of YoChicago!) Crane jumps are scheduled for this week at Lakeshore East.  Lendlease is increasing the height of the tower cranes building the Cirrus and Cascade residential towers on the southwest corner of the Chicago River and Lake Michigan. The window for the big yellow beasts to become super-sized opened on...

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All About E: The New 34-Story Skyscraper Coming to the South Loop
Oct12

All About E: The New 34-Story Skyscraper Coming to the South Loop

Remember that tip from South Loop Spy J. that found its way into our tip line last week about the next phase of Southbank starting to peek over the horizon?  It turns out, it was spot on.  And we can now tell you which new building is going up next. Southbank Building E highlighted in this rendering from Lendlease According to the mouthpiece for Lendlease, “The next phase is going to be along the river on the southern end of the...

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South Loop’s Southbank Getting Southbankier
Oct08

South Loop’s Southbank Getting Southbankier

It doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to figure out that Australian builder Lendlease is thinking about phase two of Southbank. It’s already opened The Cooper, a residential building at 720 South Wells Street, and has plenty more land to fill. Rendering of The Cooper (Courtesy of Lendlease) But The Coop’ was flown two years ago, and we haven’t heard a peep out of this riverfront nest since. Until now. South Loop Spy...

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Cirrus, Cascade Construction Continues
Oct05

Cirrus, Cascade Construction Continues

Since nobody except the employees of WBEZ have been to Navy Pier lately, chances are you’re not up to date on the construction progress of Cirrus and Cascade. Cirrus and Cascade under construction (Courtesy of YoChicago!) Fortunately, the lens crafters at YoChicago! are, and sent in these photographs taken from the roof of North Harbor Tower showing the progress on the two new skyscrapers at Lakeshore East. We hear that the ‘rona is...

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Construction Workers Continue Pounding Away on Lakeshore East
Jun07

Construction Workers Continue Pounding Away on Lakeshore East

As people slowly emerge from their spider holes to explore the lakefront they once knew and adored, the joggers, cyclists, and yoga moms will discover lots of changes at Lakeshore East. Cirrus and Cascade under construction (Courtesy of YoChicago!) As you can see in these photographs sent in by YoChicago!, work continues on both the Cirrus and Cascade residential towers going up between Lake Shore Drive and North Harbor Drive.  When...

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Construction Crews Filling Out (Concrete) Forms in Lake Shore East
May30

Construction Crews Filling Out (Concrete) Forms in Lake Shore East

If you used to cut through the badlands between Lakeshore East and Lake Michigan to catch some rays in the summertime, you’re in for a surprise when the lakefront opens to the public again.  The badlands are gone. Construction of Cirrus and Cascade in May, 2020 (Courtesy of Joe Zekas/YoChicago!) Joe Zekas at YoChicago! sent over the photograph above showing the construction progress of  Cirrus and Cascade.  Those are two of...

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Chicago Architecture Firm Happy to Not Be Needed Today
May06

Chicago Architecture Firm Happy to Not Be Needed Today

While you were sequestered in your micro apartment exchanging accusing stares with your cat (she totally ate the last Yoplait), the boffins down at bKL Architecture have been fighting the good fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. And now their part is done. The Loop designers of glassy things that scrape the sky have completed their mission of banging out protective face shields with a stable of 3D printers.  Face shield production at...

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Groundbreaking Leaves Lakeshore East With Just Two Skyscrapers to Go
Sep18

Groundbreaking Leaves Lakeshore East With Just Two Skyscrapers to Go

With skyscraper nerds across the Midwest still giddy from yesterday’s groundbreaking ceremony for the Cirrus and Cascade towers in Lakeshore East, it’s worth tallying what’s left to build there.  The answer is: not much. There are just two more large buildings left to build at the complex that started its journey from wharf-side rail yard to model urban community over half a century ago.   August 2018 rendering...

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