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Old January 19th, 2005, 08:49 PM   #1
edsg25
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Density=More density?

it's been a helluva long time since such tall buildings as Trump and Waterview were about to change the Chicago landscape. And unlike previous building booms and tall structures, this current boom is being led by residential and not office construction. That's unprecendented.

Take the enormous amount of density that these two riverfront structures will create and look at the obscene prices they are getting for top units.

And consider that Chicago, despite its enormous high rise skyline and masive building boom, is still more a city of low-to-midrise structures than it is of high rises.

So here's the question: what effect will the high roofs and the high prices of Trump and Waterview (and other super high buildings...like Museum Pk Tower) have on increased density in Chicago?

Will these buildings drive upward the price of high rise real estate, or will the current market not bear it.

And, more importantly, will these towers lead to a growth in high rise districts in the city?

High rise Chicago is still pretty well centered Downtown (Loop and Michigan Avenue), on the North Side lakefront, in Hyde Park. River North is filling in between the Loop and the Mag Mile and the South Loop is bringing high rise living to areas from Roosevelt Road to Cermak.

Do you see the new towers creating more density and more high rise neighborhoods? If so, where? Will there be more pressure on the West Side, from Greektown to UC? Do you see even more inland high rises being built on the back side of the North Side lakefront?

Will the super talls spike the city's density in areas removed from them?
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Old January 19th, 2005, 08:56 PM   #2
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I'd prefer a mix of really tall/mid-rise combination. It was one of my favorite aspects of the World Trade Center, where you have tall buildings and a lot of sky all at the same time. I believe that kind of development should be incouraged. Just my opinion.

Back to reality, I don't think our new supertalls-to-be will cause that big of a jump. Chicago neglected its super-high end luxury market for a while. Now supply is catching up. When demand is satisfied, we won't like see many more large, fancy towers. Hopefully, the decline of that market will coincide with the next office boom, but that's just blind hope.
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Old January 19th, 2005, 10:17 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STR
Back to reality, I don't think our new supertalls-to-be will cause that big of a jump. Chicago neglected its super-high end luxury market for a while. Now supply is catching up. When demand is satisfied, we won't like see many more large, fancy towers. Hopefully, the decline of that market will coincide with the next office boom, but that's just blind hope.
^ I partially agree. However, I don't see any real "satisfaction" of this demand for quite some time. I partly believe this because as downtown Chicago continues to become more liveable and lively, it will in turn attract more people and thus demand will increase.

However, the only thing I see ultimately putting a cap on central area residential development is job growth. If more job growth can't be developed downtown, then ultimately living downtown will be seen as impractical for people who work in the suburbs.

Even this, though, may tie into the cycle. Perhaps as more people live downtown, they'll "drag" their jobs with them. The kinds of people who make these decisions will be Presidents, CEO's, Board of Trustees members,etc, and that is why development of luxury condos downtown to attract these types is very important.
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Old January 19th, 2005, 10:52 PM   #4
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^ Absolutely. Something I commonly hear from older execs. in downtown companies is the "we would move to the suburbs, but we can't attract any staff-level workers (people in that 22-35 age range) out there...they all live downtown."

Well, if those same decision makers end up downtown, then we will be able to better retain the business that is already there, and perhaps provoke some jobs out in the suburbs (primarly in that Northbrook/Deerfield area) to be relocated downtown.

I fully believe that jobs, not resedential density, are the way to fuel the growth for the city. Resedential growth like we see now will be purely cosmetic if it outpaces the growth or retention of jobs in the loop.

Additionally, more jobs downtown = reduction of the office vacancy rate in the loop, which is a bit high right now.
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Old January 20th, 2005, 01:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JB_Gold Coast
^ A

Well, if those same decision makers end up downtown, then we will be able to better retain the business that is already there, and perhaps provoke some jobs out in the suburbs (primarly in that Northbrook/Deerfield area) to be relocated downtown.
JB, why do you think the Lake Cook corridor would be vulnerable? I'd say that is one of the stronger suburban office markets.
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Old January 20th, 2005, 02:52 AM   #6
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^ I didn't say it was vulnerable, but there are several companies with large employment in that area (Morgan Stanley/Discover, Baxter, Hewitt, All-State, etc) many of which could move certain operations downtown. A good example is Aon, which has the Aon Center downtown, but they also have offices in Glenview and Rolling Meadows. I know one of my friends who works at Aon and they moved his entire group downtown because more people lived down there...the more operations downtown, the better.

I would love to see any or all of the above companies move something downtown. I am on a project out at Morgan Stanley right now, and it is amazing how many of their workers drive out there from the city. At some point, that has to be a factor in their decision making when the look to move into a new building. It would be nice to see more companies relocated to a new building in the city instead of vice versa.
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Old January 20th, 2005, 04:22 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JB_Gold Coast
^
I would love to see any or all of the above companies move something downtown. I am on a project out at Morgan Stanley right now, and it is amazing how many of their workers drive out there from the city. At some point, that has to be a factor in their decision making when the look to move into a new building. It would be nice to see more companies relocated to a new building in the city instead of vice versa.
I agree with you that concentration of these offices is much better served downtown. I think a lot of the Lake Cook developments are there because of the economic power of the North Shore.
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