Wintrust Arena Starting to Approximate its Renderings
Jan24

Wintrust Arena Starting to Approximate its Renderings

The South Loop’s new multi-purpose arena is taking shape at 2130 South Prairie Avenue.  You can see in these photographs sent in by South Loop Spy Joel that the squircle-shaped exterior walls are mostly up, and there’s even some glass to be seen. “But wait,” I hear you say.  “Wasn’t this building supposed to be all kinds of light-n-airy glass so that it wouldn’t be a dead space for the...

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Another South Side Stadium Will Fly a Financial Flag
Nov16

Another South Side Stadium Will Fly a Financial Flag

Fifteen days after the White Sox ballpark officially became Guaranteed Rate Field, another nearby sporting palace has gotten a new name.  The DePaul University basketball arena, formerly known as the McCormick Place Events Center, will now be known as the Wintrust Arena. It’s hardly the first time that a home-grown financial powerhouse has used sports to leave national audiences scratching their heads.  In addition to the...

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Blue Demons’ New Home Being Built With Blue Steel
Aug24

Blue Demons’ New Home Being Built With Blue Steel

The expansion of the McCormick Place convention center to include a new flagship hotel and arena continues to transform the South Loop south of the Prairie Avenue District. While the Pelli Clarke Pelli-designed Event Center remains officially a multi-purpose facility that will be able to host smaller conventions that would normally skip Chicago, it will also be home to the DePaul University Blue Demons basketball team. And...

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McCormick Place Event Center Ups Its Game
Apr13

McCormick Place Event Center Ups Its Game

Clark Construction continues to take its game to the next level, as crews progress on the McCormick Place Event Center. Designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, the 300,000-square-foot Event Center is just one part of the project to turn the McCormick Place campus into a major entertainment district, which includes adding hotel rooms, offices, and retail space to the Prairie Avenue District. (Or is it McCormick Square?) We’re...

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Game On at McCormick Place Event Center
Jan22

Game On at McCormick Place Event Center

Please, don’t call it DePaul Arena. Granted, the new McCormick Place Event Center *will* be the new home for DePaul University’s men’s and women’s basketball beginning with the 2017-18 season, and DePaul has contributed some $70 million to the project, but expect the versatile new facility to be much more than a home-court hoops venue. Designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, the 300,000-square-foot Event...

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McCormick Place Events Center Breaks Ground
Nov17

McCormick Place Events Center Breaks Ground

The Don’t-Call-It-The-De-Paul-Arena officially broke ground Monday, with city leaders promising the McCormick Place expansion and the new hotel being built across the street will transform the South Loop. For half a century the millions of conventioneers visiting Chicago have existed in two bubbles: The McCormick Place convention center complex in the far South Loop where they spent their days shaking hands and filling tote...

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Status Update: The Please-Don’t-Call-It-DePaul-Arena
Apr09

Status Update: The Please-Don’t-Call-It-DePaul-Arena

Demolition work is just about complete at 2130 South Prairie Avenue, where the new DePaul Arena McCormick Place Events Center will soon be built. The Chicago Architecture Blog’s Daniel Schell darted by the future Demon Dome recently as crews were taking the last few bites out of an existing unloved one-story building.  You’ll remember it was just six months ago that clearing space for this multi-purpose facility got...

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Moving History in the South Loop
Nov11

Moving History in the South Loop

Moving sucks.  Along with a wedding and a death in the family, it’s one of the most stressful events in a person’s life.  Sometimes it helps to have a professional help you out. Especially when that professional has 240 wheels at his disposal. The big event in the South Loop this rainy day was Wolfe House and Building Movers, quite literally, moving house.  The historic Rees House ever-so-slowly crawled from 2110 South...

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McPier Plan Progresses as Prairie People Press Parking, Pileups and Pocket Parks Points
Aug25

McPier Plan Progresses as Prairie People Press Parking, Pileups and Pocket Parks Points

  The scaled-back plan to build a new hotel, a data center, and an arena on the edge of the Prairie Avenue District is marching forward, with proposals for two of the three components already in McPier’s hands. This past Friday was the deadline for companies to submit their proposals to the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (“McPier”) for the new Marriott Marquis hotel and the Events Center.  Earlier...

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New Pictures of the McCormick Place Event Center/DePaul Arena
Jun10

New Pictures of the McCormick Place Event Center/DePaul Arena

As the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority continues acquiring land, getting permits, and doing the things necessary to pull off its latest ambitious expansion plan, one of its partners is touting a new set of drawings of part of the project. DePaul University has released several new pictures of the proposed Events Center portion of the project, often called the “DePaul Arena.”  DePaul is chipping in $70 million...

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