South Loop Condo Building Selling Parking Lot Air Rights For New Tower
Mar12

South Loop Condo Building Selling Parking Lot Air Rights For New Tower

If you’re a developer looking for a place to plonk down a 40-story apartment building in the South Loop, the people at Vesta Lofts are suddenly your best friends. According to a sales brochure from CBRE, the Vestas have decided that they are OK with losing their views to the south in exchange for a metric assload of cash.  It was probably an easy decision since those views were obliterated by the 2010 erection of The Lex at 2138...

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River North Hotel Has the Moxy to Fly Under the Radar
Nov21

River North Hotel Has the Moxy to Fly Under the Radar

How do you build a hotel in downtown Chicago without anyone noticing? Don’t ask nobody for nothin’. That’s the case at 530 North LaSalle Street, a former gas station that’s been sitting vacant for years. The city recently issued a permit for the construction of new hotel, but there’s almost no paperwork to go with it. How is that possible? Because the property is zoned DX-7, and the planned hotel is only...

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Wrigley Field’s Hotel Zachary Gets Superstructure Permits
Nov21

Wrigley Field’s Hotel Zachary Gets Superstructure Permits

Now that the Ricketts family has successfully transformed the Cubs baseball team from perpetual losers to hometown heroes, work continues on transforming the neighborhood around their historic ballpark. The city has issued the next round of permits needed to begin serious construction on the Hotel Zachary. (Not that foundations aren’t serious work.) SUPERSTRUCTURE PERMIT FOR A PROPOSED SIX STORY 179 GUEST ROOM HOTEL (WITH GROUND...

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It’s Been a While, But Downtown Lake Shore Drive Reconfig Still “Has a Chance”
May31

It’s Been a While, But Downtown Lake Shore Drive Reconfig Still “Has a Chance”

It’s been over five years since we first heard about city plans to re-configure Lake Shore Drive in downtown Chicago.  A lot of work has been done on the Drive in other parts of the city, but the downtown portion remains congested, dangerous, and falling apart.  But according to 2nd Ward Adlerman Brian Hopkins, “This is a bold, visionary project that has a chance to come to fruition.”  It’s been a long time...

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VOA, Chicago’s Second-Largest Architecture Firm, Now With More “Eh?”
Feb11

VOA, Chicago’s Second-Largest Architecture Firm, Now With More “Eh?”

One of Chicago’s largest architecture firm is not completely a hometown company anymore. VOA Associates, which came in second in our annual Chicago Architecture Firms Expressed as Coffee Bubbles survey is being acquired by Stantec, out of Edmonton, Alberta. You may remember VOA from such local favorites as the University Center of Chicago on State Street; the Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier; and both the seventh and 12th...

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Homewood-Hampton Begins Rising Above Jefferson Street
Sep22

Homewood-Hampton Begins Rising Above Jefferson Street

Due to its geographic proximity to our West Loop bureau, the combination Homewood Suites-Hampton Inn being erected at 108 North Jefferson Street has become something of an office pet here at The Chicago Architecture Blog. Wandering a block north during lunch hour makes for a nice little break from the everyday routine. Plus, if we snap a few photos, that lunch bill instantly becomes a nice write-off. Recently, we upsized our combo...

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460 West Chicago Skyscraper Back Again, Somewhat Smaller
Sep21

460 West Chicago Skyscraper Back Again, Somewhat Smaller

Back in April we told you about 460 West Chicago Avenue, a 30-story residential tower with 260 residences planned for the northeast corner of West Chicago Avenue and North Cambridge Avenue. The building was scheduled to go before the Chicago Plan Commission five months ago, but got yanked off the table at the last minute.  Since then it’s gone through at least two revisions, one in July and another just a few days ago....

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Lucas Wars: The Esquires Strike Back
Sep21

Lucas Wars: The Esquires Strike Back

Late last week we showed you the latest design renderings for the proposed Lucas Museum of Narrative Art on the lakefront. In response, Friends of the Parks, the group that is suing to block the museum, put out what may be the shortest press release in Chicago news history: “The new design doesn’t change Friends of the Parks’ position. The problem is not the design. It’s the placement of this private institution on public trust land....

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Chicago Lands Just One Firm in This Year’s Architecture Top 25
Jul14

Chicago Lands Just One Firm in This Year’s Architecture Top 25

Chicago, once a world powerhouse of manufacturing, literature, film, music, and video games can now add architecture firms to its list of industries in which it was once a leader. The city of Burnham, Sullivan, Mies, and occasionally Wright is barely a blip in the Architectural Record annual ranking of the world’s Top 300 Architecture Firms. Chicago-based Perkins+Will is saddled with the task of waving the flag for the Windy...

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Status Update: This Crane’s Chicago Business
Jul07

Status Update: This Crane’s Chicago Business

The hotel sammitch being built on the west side of downtown Chicago should soon make its mark in the city’s skyline. West Loop Spy Kurt sent in this photo of the crane for 108 North Jefferson going about its business of building Chicago’s latest hotels — a VOA-designed 23-story combination Hampton Inn and Homewood Suites. Construction work has been underway since at least April, but Kurt tells us that the official...

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