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Old November 10th, 2007, 05:06 AM   #1
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CHICAGO | BCBS - Vertical Expansion | 239m | 784ft | 57 fl | Com

Heres a kind of old article, but its now under construction!

http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...i-business-hed

24 more stories coming to Blue Cross building

By Bruce Japsen
Tribune staff reporter
Published July 26, 2006


In an unusual corporate expansion, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois will add 24 floors on the top of its headquarters on East Randolph Street to accommodate the health insurer's rapid growth.

At a cost of $270 million, Health Care Service Corp., parent of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, said Tuesday that construction will begin early next year at 300 E. Randolph, the dual headquarters of the Illinois Blue Cross division and Health Care Service, pending approval of various permits.

The existing 33-story building already has 30 floors above ground on prime real estate located just east of Aon Center on the northern edge of Grant Park.

Health Care Service built it in 1997 at a cost of $233 million, engineering it so it would have the ability to add to the top if expansion warranted.

The building is now 466 feet high from its base and will rise to an estimated 796 feet.

The structure was originally designed by Chicago architect James Goettsch to accommodate 24 additional stories to meet an expected need for more office space, the insurer said. Thus, the skyscraper will reach its designed height of 57 stories upon completion in 2010.

"It is very unusual for a company to prepare for growth several years ahead of time," said Pauline Saliga, director of the Society of Architectural Historians in Chicago. "This is a very unusual thing to do and I cannot think of another case. It was pretty good planning on their part that they saw such growth in their future."

"They may alter an attic space or add a couple of stories but there is generally not an expansion like this in a major landmark building," Saliga said of the Blue Cross headquarters.

Saliga said most corporate expansions usually involve an annex near the main building or a tower erected nearby that allows one building to be connected to another through a bridge much like the famous Wrigley Building, she said.

Health Care Service, now the nation's fourth-largest health insurance company, has certainly made good on its intentions to grow. Since 1997 it has expanded rapidly, growing its membership organically as well as through mergers and acquisitions. The Health Care Service umbrella now includes Blue Cross and Blue Shield health insurance plans in Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma.

"This project to complete our corporate and Illinois division headquarters building is a reflection of HCSC's tremendous growth from 3 million members in 1997 to 11 million members today, and a demonstration of our commitment to the city of Chicago," said Ray McCaskey, president and chief executive officer of HCSC.

The company expects to continue to grow and McCaskey has said in previous interviews that the company is open to adding more members through mergers and acquisitions. Unlike many of its major rivals in the health insurance industry that are publicly traded and owned by investors, Health Care Service is a mutual insurance company and therefore is owned by policyholders.

Health Care Service said the building expansion will allow for the number of people who work at 300 E. Randolph to double from about 4,200 to 8,000.

However, only about half of the additional workers will be Health Care Service employees, including an undisclosed number now in offices at various locations in Chicago.

Health Care Service officials estimate that about half of the new 24 floors will be leased to outside tenants not affiliated with the giant health insurance company.

"We are planning on leasing some of the space to other companies," said Jack Segal, vice president of public affairs for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois.

News of another corporate expansion in downtown Chicago was greeted with a warm reception at City Hall. United Airlines earlier this month announced that it will move its global headquarters to downtown Chicago.

"We are pleased that HCSC and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois will be expanding their headquarters here," Lori T. Healey, commissioner of the City Department of Planning and Development, said Tuesday. "In addition to keeping jobs in the city, this is yet another example of a major corporation committed to calling Chicago home."





existing:


image courtesy of NewcitySkyline




new:


image courtesy of NewcitySkyline


And here is what it looks like now under construction

by harry C


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Old November 10th, 2007, 05:15 AM   #2
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Sweet the BCBS building is finally offically underway! My thing is I just hope they get the facade just right. Because that would look really lame it the building is two different colors. It's just how do you match a brand new facade with a decade old weather warm facade? I trust them I'm sure they know what they are doing.
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Old November 10th, 2007, 05:18 AM   #3
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A few more shots from 11/7:








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Old November 10th, 2007, 07:29 AM   #4
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Awsome pictures i_am_hydrogen! I'd hate to say but you might be the only person who can give us a birds eye view of the BCBS 24 story expanstion. Thanks for the updates buddy and keep us up to date!

Last edited by EnDleSsWaLtZ; November 10th, 2007 at 07:30 AM. Reason: mispelling
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Old November 10th, 2007, 07:31 AM   #5
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Interesting way to expand. Anyone else ever do something like this before? One has to think they will renovate the bottom portion as well. Maybe after the top portion is finished?
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Old November 10th, 2007, 07:43 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calvin W View Post
Interesting way to expand. Anyone else ever do something like this before? One has to think they will renovate the bottom portion as well. Maybe after the top portion is finished?
There won't be any renovation of the existing building. Business will carry on as usual.
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Old November 10th, 2007, 11:22 PM   #7
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Cool project!
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Old November 13th, 2007, 06:54 AM   #8
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I would be a little peeved if I had a condo in 340OTP that was going to be blocked by this. I wonder if the condo purchasers thought of this possibility.
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Old November 13th, 2007, 08:03 AM   #9
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Vancouver's Bentall 5 office tower, our best vertical phased expansion example

This Blue Cross Blue Shield vertical expansion is pretty amazing. Adding 22 storeys onto an tower that is already 400+ feet tall must be a new vertical expansion record. I love the street wall that is emerging adjacent Millennium Park. Any idea how much of this development is being induced by the park? Is this precinct very far from the heart of the downtown core?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Calvin W View Post
Interesting way to expand. Anyone else ever do something like this before?
In Vancouver a couple of office towers have undergone vertical phased expansions. The larger of the two, Bentall 5, underwent a three-phase vertical construction and expansion programme. Phase 1 was a seven storey underground parking garage that was built first in the late 90s. Then when the office market picked up phase 2 saw 22 storeys built. Phase 3 followed a couple years later and this saw 12 more floors added to bring it to a total of 34 floors of Class A office space. The building is now about 140 metres / 460ft tall and somewhere in the half-million-plus square-foot range.

Phase 2 (remember phase 1 was the underground parking garage)


Phase 3 under construction (all the offices in the building continued to be in use throughout the vertical expansion)


Phase 3 nearing completion


The completed Bentall 5 in the context of some of downtown Vancouver.
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Last edited by Vancouverite; November 14th, 2007 at 01:28 AM.
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Old November 13th, 2007, 04:19 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vancouverite View Post
In Vancouver a couple of office towers have undergone vertical phased expansions. The larger of the two, Bentall 5, underwent a three-phase vertical construction and expansion programme. Phase 1 was a seven storey underground parking garage that was built first in the late 90s. Then when the office market picked up phase 2 saw 22 storeys built. Phase 3 followed a couple years later and this saw 12 more floors added to bring it to a total of 34 floors of Class A office space. The building is now about 140 metres / 460ft tall and somewhere in the half-million-plus square-foot range.

Phase 2 (remember phase 1 was the underground parking garage)


Phase 3 under construction


Phase 3 nearing completion


The completed Bentall 5 in the context of some of downtown Vancouver.

Beautiful city!
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Old November 13th, 2007, 04:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by choyak View Post
I would be a little peeved if I had a condo in 340OTP that was going to be blocked by this. I wonder if the condo purchasers thought of this possibility.
Do you also feel bad for the people whose views have been blocked by 340 OTP? Buildings will block buildings. That's life in the big city.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EnDleSsWaLtZ View Post
Awsome pictures i_am_hydrogen! I'd hate to say but you might be the only person who can give us a birds eye view of the BCBS 24 story expanstion. Thanks for the updates buddy and keep us up to date!
Thanks, a lot. I'll do my best.
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Old November 13th, 2007, 10:11 PM   #12
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Wow, that buildings are gonna gain a lot with that expansions!
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Old November 13th, 2007, 10:52 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by choyak View Post
I would be a little peeved if I had a condo in 340OTP that was going to be blocked by this. I wonder if the condo purchasers thought of this possibility.
The expansion was going to happen someday and this was not secret info by any means. Upset buyers should have done proper research on the neighborhood before committing to units with changing views.
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Old November 14th, 2007, 01:40 AM   #14
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The building will look more balanced after the height increase.
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Old November 14th, 2007, 09:22 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheeps View Post
Beautiful city!
Thanks! You too.

I'd love to go to Chicago. My roommate visited last year and absolutely fell in love with the city and its architecture. I'm planning to make a trip back east after I graduate and before I start planning school so I definitely will be making my way to Chicago sometime in the fairly near future.
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Old November 30th, 2007, 07:43 PM   #16
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Taken 11/29:




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Old December 15th, 2007, 04:27 AM   #17
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Taken today:






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Old December 16th, 2007, 02:56 AM   #18
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Personally, I think this building has always been very boring. I would have thought that they would have added some complimentary but different to the upper portion.
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Old December 16th, 2007, 01:41 PM   #19
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I guess the existing building was already built with expansion in mind?
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Old December 17th, 2007, 04:39 AM   #20
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December 12, 2007



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