COVID Stalls Yet Another Big Downtown Chicago Project
Jun14

COVID Stalls Yet Another Big Downtown Chicago Project

In the same week that Chicago fully reopened for business — both serious and monkey — comes word of yet another downtown project that has been pushed back by the coronavirus pandemic. December, 2018 rendering of the Aon Center Observatory. The Chicago Tribune reports that we’re going to have to wait until at least 2024 for the new observatory and thrill ride at the top of the Aon Center at 200 East Randolph Street.  This is at...

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Two-Tower West Loop Skyscraper Plan Advanced
May23

Two-Tower West Loop Skyscraper Plan Advanced

Plans for a two-tower residential complex across the street from the five-tower Presidential Towers complex in the West Loop have hit paper. February, 2021 rendering of 601 West Monroe Street This is the 3,874th plan we’ve seen for 601 West Monroe Street in the last 20 years, but it appears to be the one with the best chance of succeeding.  The other ones were pretty, and interesting, and we really liked the sloping BP Americas...

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West Loop Parking Lot Targeted for 2-Tower 1,000+ Apartment Plan
Feb20

West Loop Parking Lot Targeted for 2-Tower 1,000+ Apartment Plan

There are two things that never give up hope: Dogs, and the surface parking lot next to Heritage Green Park. Model of 625 West Monroe by SMDP. The 250-space West Loop slab at 601 West Monroe Street has been the subject of at least four redevelopment plans since we started publishing 18 years ago.  From a modest 20-something-story office tower to smdp’s angular 38-story BP Tower to the 75-story office slant floated in 2013....

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CTA to Wicker Park Building: No Fat Bricks
Jul20

CTA to Wicker Park Building: No Fat Bricks

Losing weight is hard.  If it was easy, there wouldn’t be an entire industry built around it.  But you can’t just call up Weight Watchers and ask Marie Osmond to help you knock a few pounds off an overweight building. Rendering of Alcove Wicker Park That was the dilemma faced by Vermillion Wicker Park LLC recently when it got a letter in the mail from the Chicago Transit Authority.  Some smart people did the math...

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Another Downtown Construction Project Stopped by COVID-19
Jun23

Another Downtown Construction Project Stopped by COVID-19

For the second time in two weeks, we get news that a big downtown Chicago construction project has been halted. The Chicago Tribune reports that plans for a $185 million observatory at the top of the Aon Center are on hold because of the pandemic. Aon Center Observatory rendering The paper says the owners are waiting to see if a “potential treatment or cure” is developed in the near-term, and if any design changes have to...

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New Skyscraper Will Steam Into Fulton River District
Jun17

New Skyscraper Will Steam Into Fulton River District

River North developer The Habitat Company has a happy feeling in its tummy today, after the Chicago City Council approved its newest project, a 33-story residential tower in the Fulton River District. December 2019 rendering of 344 North Canal 344 North Canal will bring 343 new market-rate apartments (really, you could’s squeeze in one more?) to the neighborhood in an SCB-designed skyscraper, plus 34 affordable housing units...

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It’s the End of the Beginning at Ogden Commons
May27

It’s the End of the Beginning at Ogden Commons

The $200,000,000 mixed-use project that is replacing two public housing projects reached a milestone recently.  Construction has topped out at the building which represents phase one. Construction of Ogden Commons in Spring 2020 Ogden Commons replaces the Chicago Housing Authority’s Ogden Courts and Lawndale Complex in North Lawndale.  SCB designed the project for The Habitat Company.  It’s being built by McHugh...

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Skyscraper Poised to Erase Familiar Chicago Warehouse
May26

Skyscraper Poised to Erase Familiar Chicago Warehouse

If you spent Memorial Day Weekend in quarantine fretting about people in the park executing their God-given right to spread a deadly virus to strangers (“I’m fine...*hack*hack*hack*“), or wondering about the phlegm warriors hocking loogies onto the CTA Brown Line platform (Is there no Zyrtec in Ravenswood?), then you might have missed the news that the Chicago Plan Commission turned its thumb up to the plan to build...

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Work Begins on Replacement for North Lawndale Public Housing
Mar09

Work Begins on Replacement for North Lawndale Public Housing

Construction has begun on a mixed-use project in North Lawndale that replaces the Chicago Housing Authority’s Ogden Courts and Lawndale Complex public housing projects. Rendering of Ogden Courts (Courtesy of The Habitat Company) Ogden Courts was two buildings with about 140 homes.  It closed in 2005.  The Lawndale Complex was 187 homes in six buildings.  It came down at the turn of the century. They are being...

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33-Story Banquet Coming to the Fulton River District
Dec02

33-Story Banquet Coming to the Fulton River District

What’s better than a State Street Thanksgiving parade stuffed with Jesse White Tumblers?  How about a 33-story skyscraper stuffed into the Fulton River District?  42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly went all Father Christmas on us Thanksgiving eve, letting the development cat out of his red velvet bag.   November 2019 rendering of 344 North Canal (via the Office of Alderman Brendan Reilly) The pope’s nose at...

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