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Dear Ohioans, it happens elsewhere too....

 

Chicago's Never Built Skyscraper—Now a Hole in the Ground and a Pile of Dirt https://t.co/VEx7JVAScy

 

The height of ''the big short era'' hubris...this hole being an appropriate reminder of the financial greed of the early '00s which, ominously, is all but forgotten today.  Throw in Chicago's built-in hubris and you have the The Spire.  2,000 condos in one building starting at 750K.  Chicago was expecting world-wide investors (Arab oil folks etc.) to own properties in The Spire so they could, I guess, watch Chicago's Air Show and shop on Michigan Avenue.  The one big time contract purchaser was the guy who created beanie-babies.  Hope he got his deposit back since the developer went bankrupt.

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If every tower ever planned was built no major city would look the same as it does now. It's astonishing just how many massive buildings are proposed but never make it anywhere.

 

Chicago has no less than three proposals for 2,000 foot tall towers that never got built from the 80s to now. All three extremely interesting in their own manner and would have made a wildly different skyline for Chicago.

 

On top of that there are probably a dozen other supertall proposals that were very serious but never went anywhere for one reason or another. I remember reading somewhere that the moment some company in Chicago proposes a new tallest in the city is when you need to start liquidating any real estate assets you may have because the market is about to crash. And for many decades this has held true.

 

Chicago has had a few 2,000'+ towers proposed; none, however, got the ''hole'' digging stage like The Spire, but times were different 10 years ago.

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The Miglin-Beitler Sky Needle and 7 South Dearborn definitely got close, but you're right in that they never made it as far as the Chicago Spire. Which is probably because the Chicago Spire started way earlier than it really should have. Financing was questionable to begin with and yet they began digging.

 

I will always have a soft spot for pushing height barriers from a purely engineering-fan standpoint. I find solutions to the exaggerated problems that exist by pushing the boundaries of what we can build incredibly interesting. That's why I don't even care how ostentatious many of these buildings wind up being.

 

Although the Miglin-Beitlier was one sexy Mother-F****r. It would have been THE quintessential postmodern tower.

 

m-b_2.jpg

 

So sexy. Then again, so was 7 South Dearborn.

 

7sd_02.jpg

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The Miglin-Beitler Sky Needle and 7 South Dearborn definitely got close, but you're right in that they never made it as far as the Chicago Spire. Which is probably because the Chicago Spire started way earlier than it really should have. Financing was questionable to begin with and yet they began digging.

 

I will always have a soft spot for pushing height barriers from a purely engineering-fan standpoint. I find solutions to the exaggerated problems that exist by pushing the boundaries of what we can build incredibly interesting. That's why I don't even care how ostentatious many of these buildings wind up being.

 

Although the Miglin-Beitlier was one sexy Mother-F****r. It would have been THE quintessential postmodern tower.

 

m-b_2.jpg

 

So sexy. Then again, so was 7 South Dearborn.

 

7sd_02.jpg

 

That's right, 7 S Dearborn, forgot about that one but I do remember there were a few of these.

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There were a handful of other 2,000+ foot tall towers thrown about but beyond Chicago spire I believe Miglin-Beitler and 7 South Dearborn are the only two that were ever serious enough to actually be a possibility.

 

There's that current 2,000' version of the bundled tube structure Sears Tower uses that's proposed by that Brit that owns the old Post Office that has about a .01% chance of ever happening.

 

I'm curious if the rumors of BIG working on a design for the Chicago Spire site will come true. It's a super prominent site and is perfect for something unreasonably tall. But BIG is terrible with making tall buildings. His 2 WTC proposal in Manhattan is one of the worst towers I've seen in recent years and his proposal for the Hudson Yards is almost equally as bad. He just doesn't seem to get skyscrapers. His smaller structures are hit or miss but are rarely offensively bad. His towers are basically all offensively bad w/ the exception of the W57th Pyramid in Manhattan.

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Arguably the largest project in the country (really a combo of two adjacent, interconnected developments) began in Chicago yesterday. In total the two projects will include 76 acres of utterly unused land in the south loop (whereas New York's Hudson Yards project is 28 acres), and extends from Harrison all the way to 18th street, in between the river and Wells.

 

Groundbreaking of first phase of the project started yesterday (it'll encompass 14 acres) and will end with eight buildings, parks, retail, etc, from Harrison to Roosevelt). I don't know when/if groundbreaking has been scheduled for the 62 acres portion (Roosevelt to basically Chinatown), probably not, but it's all moving forward and will absolutely redefine the south loop and city as a whole.  Very exciting stuff.

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What's it called? Any links? Renderings?


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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Ah, this is the site of the former Grand Central Station where B&O trains from Washington, Pittsburgh, Youngstown, Akron and Fostoria called at Chicago until the station was demolished in 1969. Hard to believe this river-side land has sat vacant ever since. You would think this property would have been more highly sought after in the last 47 years...

 

1963_Grand_Central_Station.jpg

 

grandcentralwaiting.jpg

 

n006591.jpg

 

GCChicago.jpg

 

 

 


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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I'm really glad to see construction starting on this huge site. I always felt it was so strange how Chicago goes from such incredible density of the Loop to literally a giant open field and a few big box stores in like 2 blocks. The whole South Loop area (or the parts I've seen of it) feels very....artificial, if that makes sense. This project will definitely help extend Chicago's core southward, though I do wish there could be a little more creativity in the architecture. It looks like there are some interesting features at ground level, but I hate the flat rooflines of all the buildings. Throw in some spires or crowns or something! The latest completed building at Hudson Yards could be an inspiration in this regard.

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At 76 stories and 829 feet, it will be Chicago's 13th tallest building....

 

Crescent Heights’ South Loop development named ‘One Grant Park,’ set to be completed 2019

http://www.rejournals.com/2017/01/04/crescent-heights-south-loop-development-named-one-grant-park-set-to-be-completed-2019/


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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Mapping the 44 high-rises under construction in Chicago right now

BY JAY KOZIARZ AND AJ LATRACE  JAN 12, 2017, 12:18PM CST

 

Developers are keeping Chicago architects and construction crews busy in the new year as the Windy City's building boom keeps on rolling. Since August, nine new developments have been added to the list of active projects. Nine previously featured towers—Next, Moment, Exhibit on Superior, Vue53, 1001 S. State, River Point, 108 North Jefferson, MiCa, and the University of Chicago Campus North Residential Commons—have officially opened for business and were removed. The additions include: One Grant Park, Solstice on the Park, 1136 S. Wabash, 1101 S. Wabash, 1411 S. Michigan, 123 E. Cermak, Elevate Lincoln Park, 110 N. Carpenter, and Riverline’s Ancora tower.

 

It's worth noting is that the current level of construction in Chicago rivals the peak levels experienced in the early recession years. This list represents thousands of new apartments and hotel rooms, and even some new downtown office space. The condo market is still thawing out from the deep freeze of the Great Recession, but we are seeing a gradual increase in new condo construction—most notably the supertall Vista Tower underway in Lakeshore East.

 

Note: Map points are listed by building height from the tallest to shortest.

 

MORE:

http://chicago.curbed.com/maps/chicago-tower-highrise-construction-map

 

Vista_Tower.0.0.png

 

451-Grand-new.0.0.jpg

 

150_20n_20riverside.0.0.png

 

This looks like a knock-off of the new Hilton Convention Hotel in Cleveland!

Marriott_20Marquis_20McCormick_20Place.0.0.jpg


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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Yesterday the Amazon Bookstore opened in Southport (a half mile west of the Cubs). It was glorious. Good hours, a coffee shop, a large electronics and also children's section, and scanners that will give you multiple prices for books for Prime members and non.

 

https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20170321/lakeview/amazon-books-inside-open-independent-kindle

 

What's interesting is the outcry by other independent bookstore proprietors, and I disagree with their vilifying Amazon.  You should see a few of the bookstores that are utterly falling apart, smelly, damp, dangerously narrow and small, and with exceptionally rude owner-clerks working -  The Gallery Bookstore Ltd (in Boystown) and Bookman's Corner (in Lincoln Park) come to mind.

 

Quite a few bookstores in Chicago are amazing, and it would be horrible if they closed. But to blame Amazon or promote a boycott - to hell with that nonsense. The ones listed below are awesome places.

 

https://chireviewofbooks.com/2017/03/21/12-chicago-bookstores-to-visit-instead-of-amazon-today/

 

 

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Yesterday the Amazon Bookstore opened in Southport (a half mile west of the Cubs). It was glorious. Good hours, a coffee shop, a large electronics and also children's section, and scanners that will give you multiple prices for books for Prime members and non.

 

https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20170321/lakeview/amazon-books-inside-open-independent-kindle

 

What's interesting is the outcry by other independent bookstore proprietors, and I disagree with their vilifying Amazon.  You should see a few of the bookstores that are utterly falling apart, smelly, damp, dangerously narrow and small, and with exceptionally rude owner-clerks working -  The Gallery Bookstore Ltd (in Boystown) and Bookman's Corner (in Lincoln Park) come to mind.

 

Quite a few bookstores in Chicago are amazing, and it would be horrible if they closed. But to blame Amazon or promote a boycott - to hell with that nonsense. The ones listed below are awesome places.

 

https://chireviewofbooks.com/2017/03/21/12-chicago-bookstores-to-visit-instead-of-amazon-today/

 

 

 

Does the coffee shop at the amazon store keep good hours?  Or do they do Chicago hours and close at like 2pm, like 90% of all cafes do here.

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Very good hours. Opens at 6:30am, closes at 9pm I believe (maybe not on Sundays).

 

And if you want to go to the coolest coffee shop in the city, which ironically has the worst hours, check out Kittibtznest on Webster/Clybourn. I've never seen a cafe quite like it.

 

Tourists should make it a point to go there; it's that damn good.

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I'll have to check it out.  I prefer open later instead of earlier (I was spoiled by the Highland in Cincinnati).

 

My fave that has bad hours is Sip, its such a cozy spot (though its closed by like 6pm :/).

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France has attempted to boot Amazon completely out of the country to avoid losing its independent book stores.  The problem in the United States is that so many were already put out of business by Borders and Barnes & Noble before Amazon appeared.  In fact, Amazon launched by piggy-backing on the handful of regional warehousing suppliers to those giant chains. 

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^ woah, now that is an interesting reset for that well known site. i've heard about these starbucks reserve shops.

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With the "retail apocalypse" that's going on right now, it would make sense to purpose retail spaces into places for people to hang out like this Starbucks. After all, shopping malls used to fill that void before they died.

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Amtrak will use federal Railroad Rehabilitation & Improvement Financing (which Congress just expanded to include station-area real estate development) to increase its real estate revenues to support improvements to Chicago Union Station and reduce its operating subsidy....

 

052617-Chicago-Union-Station-rendering.jpg

 

5/26/2017

Amtrak designates master developer for Chicago Union Station project

 

Amtrak and Chicago city officials yesterday announced a team led by Riverside Investment & Development Co. will be the master developer for the $1 billion project to redevelop Union Station and the surrounding area.

 

The proposed commercial development will total 3.1 million square feet at full buildout and include new office towers, a hotel and office and residential space.

 

Riverside proposed the initial conceptual design in conjunction with co-developer and co-venture partner Convexity Properties — a DRW Co., according to an Amtrak press release.

 

MORE:

http://www.progressiverailroading.com/amtrak/news/Amtrak-designates-master-developer-for-Chicago-Union-Station-project--51715


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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Amtrak will use federal Railroad Rehabilitation & Improvement Financing (which Congress just expanded to include station-area real estate development) to increase its real estate revenues to support improvements to Chicago Union Station and reduce its operating subsidy....

 

052617-Chicago-Union-Station-rendering.jpg

 

5/26/2017

Amtrak designates master developer for Chicago Union Station project

 

Amtrak and Chicago city officials yesterday announced a team led by Riverside Investment & Development Co. will be the master developer for the $1 billion project to redevelop Union Station and the surrounding area.

 

The proposed commercial development will total 3.1 million square feet at full buildout and include new office towers, a hotel and office and residential space.

 

Riverside proposed the initial conceptual design in conjunction with co-developer and co-venture partner Convexity Properties — a DRW Co., according to an Amtrak press release.

 

MORE:

http://www.progressiverailroading.com/amtrak/news/Amtrak-designates-master-developer-for-Chicago-Union-Station-project--51715

 

Value Capture is such a great idea.  Hope to see more of this in the US

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This is pretty damn exciting; I believe it will fill the last two major lots (save for one empty corner). That wasteland along LSD is such an eyesore.

 

https://chicago.curbed.com/2017/6/26/15866032/chicago-development-news-magellan-future-phase-lake-shore-east

 

More than 2,000 residential units and nearly 900 hotel rooms planned for Lake Shore East.

 

F yeah! It'll be good to get some new neighbors here (I work in the area).

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This one is a bit of a reach...

 

 

https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20170801/bush/us-steel-finds-buyer-for-440-acre-south-works-site

 

20,000 Homes Planned For Huge Vacant U.S. Steel Site As New Buyer Emerges

 

Hopefully smarter people than I are aware of the area's limitations, potential, and have good reason to believe this project, even in piecemeal, can be viable. Frankly I don't see it.

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Just a few interesting projects and commentary:

 

https://chicago.curbed.com/2017/10/6/16435710/old-post-office-development-landmark-tax-incentive

 

In a perfect world, this would be a massive indoor amusement park, water park, or casino. That said, it's going to be one hell of a success story after the renovation, with or without Amazon. The location is incredible (right by the Metra and Amtrack at Union station, the expressway, the blue line and the brown line), and it has a very visible, dominating prescense.

 

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-michael-reese-redevelopment-met-0603-20170602-story.html

 

This project, again whether it's for another Amazon headquarters or not, can both redefine the neighborhood. Bronzeville has unbelievable potential and could effectively connect downtown/south loop to Kenwood/Hyde Park. A fifty+ block "safe" stretch of the Loop going south to the southern edge of Hyde Park would really do much for the Southside's reputation as a whole. This one project could be a significant piece in changing the narrative.

 

http://skyrisecities.com/forum/threads/chicago-wolf-point-290m-66s-magellan-development-pelli-clarke-pelli.22087/page-4

 

The second of three glass towers (the first was already built) downtown where the river begins going north-south. Once all three buildings are complete, this area will be absolutely beautiful and the skyline will alter.

 

https://chicago.curbed.com/2017/3/13/14907004/merchandise-mart-chicago-lighting-public-art

 

I don't know how realistic this is, but my god would it be fun. I'm surprised more buildings haven't had those kinds of projections; it would make for a really fun evening and a huge draw for locals and tourists. Additionally, it would rejuvenate the last block of the recently rebuilt Riverwalk where the city ran out of money, and it looks like shit as a result. People would clamor all over that section to watch projections across the river at Merchandise Mart.

 

And last but not least, https://www.timeout.com/chicago/blog/the-312-riverrun-project-will-install-elevated-paths-along-the-chicago-river-100517

 

Good lord... I can't wait to check this out!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This is currently going up in my neighborhood:

 

https://chicago.curbed.com/2016/7/13/12174440/river-west-development-news-gonnella-construction-permit

 

 

I think the buildings look better than the renderings - the bricks even change shade in the Sun.  Not sure about the grocery store (if they have something lined up) but it would be very much welcomed around here.

 

 

https://buildingupchicagodotcom.files.wordpress.com/2017/06/img_1490.jpg

 

 

A few more developments have been spawned from this one.  The TOD ordinance combined with Rahm increasing the skyscraper zone to include this neighborhood I think is to blame:

 

 

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/realestate/20171013/CRED03/171019925/another-226-apartments-planned-for-river-west

 

 

 

 

Including this one with a badly managed construction site (that's been blocking sidewalks for months) and a really ugly design:

https://chicago.curbed.com/2017/1/26/14357566/river-west-milwaukee-avenue-apartments

 

 

(When is that trendy staggered windows thing going to die the death it deserves).

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Chicago's population loss is all about uneven development. Even as the city and surrounding county are losing people, the city has almost 50 high rises under construction, mostly downtown. There's demand in some places, complete lack of a market elsewhere. https://t.co/H1QfLefcEI


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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Chicago's population loss is all about uneven development. Even as the city and surrounding county are losing people, the city has almost 50 high rises under construction, mostly downtown. There's demand in some places, complete lack of a market elsewhere. https://t.co/H1QfLefcEI

 

Sounds like what's happening in Cleveland but on a different scale.

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Boom towns! The more Cleveland infills and densifies (re-densifies) the more it will be like the Chicago (obviously without the older classic Chicago style stuff). They have slight architectural differences but have the same layout. Main drag commercial/residential streets with detached single family, multi family mixed-in side streets.

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Chicago is famous for the brick bungalows. Cleveland is known for its duckbill doubles.


"Fascism begins the moment a ruling class, fearing the people may use their political democracy to gain economic democracy, begins to destroy political democracy in order to retain its power of exploitation and special privilege." -- Tommy Douglas, Scottish-born Canadian Baptist minister and the seventh Premier of Saskatchewan

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