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Old December 12th, 2004, 04:41 AM   #101
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In the S-T article, it was mentioned that the Central Station developers wer waiting for the area to be sufficiently developed before going ahead with plans as massive as One Museum Park.

If all this construction takes place (and, let's face it, this has proven to be one prime piece of real estate), there are some interesting implications for the city's skyline.

I'd like to suggest one.

Lake Shore Drive offers two breaktaking views of the downtown skyline along the lakefront: the North Side and the South Side. Both spectacular, the South Side has an advantage the North Side doesn't: an unimpeded view of the Loop. From the north, that view is obstructed by the towers of the city's Near North Side, in its role as the northern portion of the downtown district.

Continued development in the Printers Row/Dearborn Park/Central Station/McCormick Place area will, IMHO, produce a similiar result. The South will be like the North.

That is, I foresee a time when the view coming up LSD from Hyde Park will feature these South Loop communities (in their role as the south anchor for downtown) and much of the present Loop view will fade to the background.
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Old December 12th, 2004, 04:42 AM   #102
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Wabash site goes to condo builder

By Thomas A. Corfman

Tribune staff reporter
Published December 8, 2004

Another condominium development is coming to the Loop.

Mesa Development LLC, which is developing the Heritage at Millennium Park luxury condominium tower at Randolph Street and Wabash Avenue, has a nonbinding agreement to acquire a 28,400-square-foot development site two blocks away, sources said.

The site, at 21-29 S. Wabash Ave., is currently owned by the Art Institute of Chicago, which had acquired the properties with an eye toward eventual expansion of its school. Instead, the institute put them up for sale this spring.

Three vacant, nondescript low-rise buildings on the site would be demolished to make way for the development.

One of the buildings once housed Kroch's & Brentano's bookstore, which closed in 1995.

The $165 million, 57-story Heritage was developed by Chicago-based Mesa in a venture that includes Matthew and Daniel Walsh, owners of Chicago-based construction firm Walsh Group.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steely Dan
Quote:
Originally Posted by the urban politician
Did you guys hear the news about the developer tearing down some buildings in Jeweler's Row for a new condo highrise?
of course we heard about that project, HowardL and victor both posted articles on it in this very thread earlier this week. as for your concerns about the demolition of the 3 existing buildings, according to the article that victor posted, it doesn't appear that they are architecturally significant. here's a quote from the article:

"Three vacant, nondescript low-rise buildings on the site would be demolished to make way for the development."

Well so everyone will know what "Three vacant, non-descript low-rise buildings are in question", I decided to take shots of them. Now the three buildings aren't necessacarily georgious, but some of the detailing is pretty nice. I also like the cornices on the 3 buildings and the northern most building on the site has nice arched windows.


Really nice Chicago-style windows on this one.


I hadn't really realized this, but if projects like the Heritage keep happening on Wabash, Grant Park will have a double western wall: The shorter, classical, late 19th early 20th century brick and stone streetwall of Michigan Avenue; and the taller, modern, steel-glass and concrete Wabash Avenue streetwall. Had any of you all thought about it that way??
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Old December 12th, 2004, 02:02 PM   #103
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that suspicious LaSalle Bank fire? LA's competition with Chicago. LA's desire to pass up Chicago in status. The unfinished work of Mrs. O'Leary's cow. You don't think? I mean, it couldn't be......... Silverlake? Could it?
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Old December 12th, 2004, 10:28 PM   #104
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I've been waiting for this to start. It's one of my favorite new projects in Chicago (outside of downtown):

CITY REPORT
Construction begins on Roosevelt Square project

By Jeanette Almada
Special to the Tribune
Published December 12, 2004

Following a lengthy community review process, LR Development has begun construction of the first units at Roosevelt Square, the 2,441-unit, mixed-income neighborhood that will replace much of ABLA Homes public housing complex on the Near West Side.

The Chicago Housing Authority, which owns the 166-acre ABLA site, designated LR in December 2002 as the master developer to build mixed-income housing on much of the ABLA complex.

LR's $600 million Roosevelt Square project will be built on land that surrounds the Brooks Homes and Loomis Courts, the only two projects remaining in the ABLA complex, which once consisted of the Jane Addams Homes, Brooks Homes, Loomis Homes and the 15-story Abbot Apartments.

In 2000, the CHA rehabbed the 835-unit complex and reduced the number of units to 329, according to CHA development manager Timothy Veenstra. It will rehab the 126-unit Loomis Courts, he said.

But the former ABLA site is not entirely the source for LR's 135-acre development site. "The city is acquiring a few privately owned parcels that are along Roosevelt Road for our Roosevelt Square site," said Steve Porras, LR vice president and project manager for the Roosevelt Square project.

"The CHA will assign a 99-year lease for the portions of the former ABLA site where we build rental units or condo buildings. They will deed the lots where we build townhouses to us, so that we can sell those townhouses as fee simple, and deed them to townhouse buyers," Porras said.

In its first of six construction phases, LR will build 414 apartments, condominiums and townhouses on 13.2 acres between Blue Island and Racine Avenues and 13th and Arthington Streets, according to Porras.

Once completed, Roosevelt Square will extend from Ashland Avenue to Blue Island and from 15th Street to Cabrini Street.

LR began building 181 apartments in November, in a partnership with Chicago-based Heartland Housing Inc., an affiliate of the Chicago-based non-profit Heartland Alliance. By the time Roosevelt Square is completed, it will have built 1,090 rental apartments.

All of the one- to four-bedroom apartments, with 557 to 1,300 square feet of space, will be leased affordably, according to Porras -- 125 apartments to public housing tenants and 56 to non-public-housing tenants who earn up to 60 percent of the Chicago-area median income, or $45,240 for a family of four.

While public housing tenants will pay a percentage of their income as rent, other tenants will pay $690 to $956 a month, Porras said.

"Non-public housing tenants are already contacting our leasing agent, Related Management, who currently operates out of our office on Hubbard Street," Porras said. He added that Related Management will open an on-site leasing office this winter.

LR is partnering with Addison-based Quest Development Group to build Roosevelt Square's for-sale units, in townhouses and condos in low- and midrise buildings, according to Porras.

The partnership has formed three development entities: RS Homes LLC, building three-flats and six-flats scattered throughout the site; RS Pointe LLC, to build the four-story Delano building with 27 condos at Roosevelt Road and Blue Island; and RS Square LLC to build the five-story, 45-condo Franklin building at Roosevelt and Racine.

The developer will build 233 for-sale units in its first construction phase, according to Porras. Once Roosevelt Square is completed, it will have 1,351 for-sale units.

Porras said 159 of the for-sale units will be sold at market rates. "Thirty-eight townhouses with 1,800 to 2,900 square feet of space will sell for prices that will start in the $430,000 range," Porras said. "Of 121 market-rate condominiums, one-bedroom units with 694 to 840 square feet of space will start in the $230,000s; two-bedroom units with 1,037 to 1,326 square feet will start in the $240,000s; and three-bedroom units with 1,263 to 2,191 square feet will start in the $360,000s."

"Forty-seven of the one-bedroom to three-bedroom condominiums will be priced affordably," Porass said. "Seven will be sold for $100,000 to $135,000 to qualified public housing families who are currently being trained in homeownership. Forty condos will be set aside for sale to families earning 80 percent to 100 percent of [Chicago] area median income [$60,320 to $75,400 for a family of four]," Porras said.

"Twenty-seven condos will be set aside for sale to moderate-income earners [$75,4000 to $90,480 annually for a family of four], and will sell for prices between the $180,000s to $280,000s," Porras said.

LR is marketing the for-sale units from a sales center at Roosevelt and Racine.

Roosevelt Square's first construction phase is being financed with $15.4 million in U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development HOPE VI funds and with $2.69 million in low-income housing tax credits, according to Porras.

LR is still negotiating with city officials for $9.7 million in tax increment financing (TIF) funds to subsidize construction of the affordable for-sale units in the first construction phase. That TIF subsidy was approved in September by the Community Development Commission, but is yet to be approved by the City Council.

Chicago-based DeStefano + Partners is the master planning architect for the project. Other architects designing portions of the project are Brook Architecture Inc., Urban Works Limited, Smith and Smith Associates Inc. and Macondo Corp., all of Chicago.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 05:15 AM   #105
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Wow, I missed alot when I was in NY! At any rate... I'm really excited about OMP! I would love to see Grant Park really framed in on all three sides; the north is already a great wall with 1 Pru, Aon, BCBS and all the "New East Side" highrises... the west is, obviously, strongly punctuated with the Michigan Avenue streetwall... now, I'm glad to see that a concerted effort is being made to close off the south. Until now, I've always felt the south end of the park sort of just faded away into the south shore.

The Wabash development is also exciting (although, I'll remain skeptical until we've got more concrete evidence that anything will ever happen with it). As bvic mentioned, I love the idea of the double streetwall of old in front of new along Michigan.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 09:39 PM   #106
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With regards to the Wabash and Monroe project... While the buildings aren't exceptional, the conservation of the facades should be considered, if nothing else to maintain the streetwall in it's present form. I suspect that the developer will do the same thing to these buildings as they did at the Heritage project, which is to save the facades, and build a parking structure behind them, thereby salvaging the integrity of the sidewalk view. OK, that is at least what I hope.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 10:26 PM   #107
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I don't see why they wouldn't. Preserving the facades ends up costing about the same as tearing them down and having to replace them. I think what they did with the Heritage was great.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 10:45 PM   #108
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i am positive that it costs significantly more to save a facade, ala the heritage, than it does to just rip down an entire existing structure and start from scratch. i don't have exact figures, but when you consider the lengths that they went to preserve the old facaeds at the heritage site by building that whole temporary steel structure to support the facades while the rest of the buildings were demolished, it's quite apparent to me that facade saving practices actually bring a large cost increase to a project.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 12:47 AM   #109
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At the same time, you have to remember that they don't need to spend money on materials for a new facade (where material costs are typically the highest). I would guess that these costs almost cancel out.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 01:00 AM   #110
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^ it would be great if that were case, but the extremely complicated and techinical process employed to save an old facade, either by leaving it in situ or by removal and reconstruction, is incredibly labor intensive. the labor required to complete that process would almost always far outweigh the labor and material costs of building a new base facade from scratch.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 01:40 AM   #111
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different perspective on the facade issue

I think that it just has to cost more to save the old facade(s) and integrate them into the new structure. There has to be extra billling to the architects, engineers and laborors. There may even be extra insurance for something like the scaffolding.

However, the more important points may be (1) whether the difference is so large that it could mean the difference between going ahead or not with a development, or (2) whether the added costs of retaining the older facades are recouped because the building becomes more attractive to potential buyers or retailers with the older and more appealing facades in place.

I think the Heritage gives the historic facades more than a mention in their advertisements.

Side note: on Clark street at about 1800 or 1850 north there are three brownstone facades that have been saved while new buildings are built into them. They have been sitting there by themselves for about six months or so. That probably lends some evidence to the idea that old facades add a great deal to the value of, at least, some developments. Another example might be the Ambassador West. All they saved was the "pre-war facade" on that building as it went condo.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 01:48 AM   #112
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^ indeed, there may very well be some additional value in saving an old facade and incorporating it into a new building, but i was talking purely about up front construction costs, and in that case, saving an old facade is a more expensive proposition than simply starting from scratch. it's not SO expensive as to render the option finacially impossible, but it most definitely is a cost increase, and depending on a whole wide range of other factors, it may or may not make sense to go through with that cost increase.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 03:57 AM   #113
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Some info on the Spertus Institute:

City gives Spertus thumbs up on plans for new facility
Columbia officials express interest in buying the current Spertus location
By Alicia Dorr
City Beat Editor

Courtesy Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies
The Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies, 618 S. Michigan Ave., plans to build a new headquarters in the lot next to their existing location. The glass structure, a departure from the historic buildings on South Michigan Avenue the city’s approval.
The row of historic buildings on South Michigan Avenue is about to get a new, contemporary look.

The City of Chicago Plan Commission gave the Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies, 618 S. Michigan Ave., the green light on its plans for a new, modern facility. The institute, located just north of Columbia’s South Campus Building, 624 S. Michigan Ave., is set to begin construction on the vacant one-third acre lot next to its existing headquarters in Spring 2005.

The 10-story building, designed by architectural firm Krueck & Sexton, will have a diamondlike glass façade. It will house the institute’s museum, college and library, as well as support space and a family center. The new building will also boast central Chicago’s only kosher deli, and more than 50 percent of its rooftop will be green.

The building will have to meet certain requirements because it is in a city-designated landmark district. As far as the design, however, no changes were made to the proposal given to the commission, according to Pete Scales, spokesman for the Department of Planning and Development.

Now that the plans have been approved, Spertus is working with Krueck & Sexton to fortify the glass structure against weathering. According to Betsy Gomberg, director of institutional outreach for Spertus, the building will be hardened to protect it from outside conditions and to maintain the inside climate for the more than 500,000 historic artifacts.

“The technology will be integrated through every aspect of the building, instead of like other buildings that have to be modified later,” Gomberg said.

Security is also a concern in the post 9/11 era, according to Gomberg. Krueck & Sexton architect Tom Jacobs said that high-performance glass would be used on the building, making it environmentally comfortable, but there are no specifics.

“The building hardening, as a concept, is under investigation, and to what extent is too soon to tell,” Jacobs said.

The building will be almost 120 feet shorter than the around 280 foot ceiling cap for buildings on the landmarked street. It is also basically composed in the same vertical style as the existing architecture in the area, even though the new site is not as wide as the current Spertus building. The lost space will be made up for in the building’s depth. According to Gomberg, the new structure will end up having 40 percent more room.

State-of-the-art construction technology, such as the glass
David Maki/The Chronicle
The Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies will be built on the vacant lot on the south side of Columbia’s Alexandroff Center, 600 S. Michigan Ave. The college is eyeing the existing location for expansion.
hardening, will make the building more efficient, she said. This is a way the building will be different from its historic neighbors, but the basic composition and structure of the building still reflects landmark requirements.

Alice Sinkevitch, executive director of the Chicago chapter of the American Institute of Architects and editor of the AIA Guide to Chicago, said the new design will be good for the street.

“It will benefit the existing historic buildings because it will draw more attention to what’s already there,” Sinkevitch said. “It will really solidify that end of [Michigan Avenue].”

The building will also affect the area, not just the look of the South Michigan Avenue skyline. The institute’s glass design will face Grant Park, which was recently brought up to date with Millennium Park at the north end. The modern style will be a departure from the traditional architecture Grant Park currently faces.

Bob O’Neill, Grant Park Conservancy founder and Grant Park Advisory Council president, said the new building is very important to the park because of its visibility. The response has been enormously positive, he said.

“The impact will be very positive on Grant Park and the area,” O’Neill said. “It’s a modern design integrated with historic elements, which is important because it is very visible.”

O’Neill said the glass front will provide park visitors with the ability to see the institute’s activity, which he said will “integrate it with the community.”

As for the institute’s current location, Gomberg said that they hope the building will stay as an education center. With Spertus moving next door to Columbia’s Alexandroff Campus Center, 600 S. Michigan Ave., the vacancy could be filled by Columbia. Alicia Berg, vice president of campus environment, said that the school is still a potential buyer.

“We never stopped looking at that as an option—we’re still interested,” Berg said.

Berg also said that the design for the new neighboring building will be positive for “a part of Michigan Avenue that needs identity.”

The institute will stay in its current location until the new facility is ready, which is scheduled for completion in 2007. According to Gomberg, the building will cost about $40 million to construct. Spertus recently moved closer to this figure with a gift from the Joseph and Bessie Feinberg Foundation, which offered $5 million for the institute to complete a 400-seat auditorium.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 05:27 AM   #114
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That Spertus Institute is going to be a real beauty! I can't wait to see how that looks among all those old fashioned beauties on S. Michigan Ave.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 01:28 PM   #115
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geoff_diamond
I would love to see Grant Park really framed in on all three sides; the north is already a great wall with 1 Pru, Aon, BCBS and all the "New East Side" highrises... the west is, obviously, strongly punctuated with the Michigan Avenue streetwall... now, I'm glad to see that a concerted effort is being made to close off the south. Until now, I've always felt the south end of the park sort of just faded away into the south shore.
Let's see: three street walls facing Grant Park, north and south playing off of each other symmetrically, and the fourth face being Lake Michigan:

I imagine Daniel Burnham has a big smile on his face as he looks down on us today.
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Old December 14th, 2004, 01:31 PM   #116
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Quote:
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That Spertus Institute is going to be a real beauty! I can't wait to see how that looks among all those old fashioned beauties on S. Michigan Ave.
What are the plans for the original building? Spertus is planning a move, not an expansion. The original is hardly a streetwall classic, but I assume it is protected. Anybody know what's what on this?
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Old December 14th, 2004, 05:32 PM   #117
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25
What are the plans for the original building? Spertus is planning a move, not an expansion. The original is hardly a streetwall classic, but I assume it is protected. Anybody know what's what on this?
It would have been a streetwall classic if the facade havdn't been altered. It would be nice if they restored the facade back to its original condition.
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Old December 15th, 2004, 12:28 AM   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BVictor1
It would have been a streetwall classic if the facade havdn't been altered. It would be nice if they restored the facade back to its original condition.
I had no idea that there was an original facade...so, you're right. that had to be an improvement.

I hope that the same (original facade) isn't true for a neighbor of Spertus...and I'm talking about the ugliest bldg down the entire streetwall, that being Johnson Publishing.
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Old December 15th, 2004, 12:38 AM   #119
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25
What are the plans for the original building? Spertus is planning a move, not an expansion. The original is hardly a streetwall classic, but I assume it is protected. Anybody know what's what on this?
^ It is now official.

Nobody reads my posts..
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Old December 15th, 2004, 03:31 AM   #120
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Even though it was already announced by BVictor, skyscrapers.com just started posting pics of the Regatta's construction. NOW it is official
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