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Old January 10th, 2006, 03:00 AM   #621
Frumie
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Jan. 09, 2006
By Alby Gallun


Jones Lang LaSalle wins bidding to redevelop Union Station
(Crain’s) — A joint venture led by Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. has won the bidding to redevelop part of Union Station into a hotel, condominiums, office and retail space.

Jones Lang LaSalle and a company headed by two former executives at the Chicago-based real estate firm plan to redevelop about 500,000 square feet of vacant former railroad offices in the West Loop building and build an 18-story tower on top of it. The project would cost about $250 million.

Amtrak, which owns the building at Clinton, Canal, Jackson and Adams streets, has agreed to enter into exclusive development negotiations with the Jones Lang LaSalle joint venture. An Amtrak spokesman declined to say when the agreement expires or identify other parties that participated in the bidding.

Completed in 1925, Union Station was supposed to include a high-rise under the vision of its original designer, famed architect Daniel Burnham. Mr. Burnham’s successor firm, Graham, Anderson, Probst and White, completed the building’s design after Mr. Burnham’s death in 1912.

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Jones Lang LaSalle is teaming up on the project with Youssefi-Scott Development Co., a development firm founded by Hossein Youssefi, a former Jones Lang LaSalle executive, and Stuart Scott, the firm’s former chairman and CEO.

“Our goal is to perpetuate Burnham’s historic vision for Union Station and at the same time create a state-of-the-art, mixed-use facility that includes office space built for the 21st century,” Mr. Youssefi said in a statement.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 03:05 AM   #622
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^How exactly would that work?

I hope they don't screw anything up...
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Old January 10th, 2006, 03:19 AM   #623
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They build on top of it? There were some renderings I posted some pages ago about this that were designed by Lucien Lagrange.

Edit: In case I didn't post it:


Last edited by spyguy; January 10th, 2006 at 03:26 AM.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 07:45 AM   #624
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Thank god you reminded me TUP... for the last little while I thought this was Texas. I have absolutely nothing against concrete as long as it's done right (see: Contemporaine). The problem is, I'm pretty sick of every single Northwestern Med building looking exactly like the last. I'm all for some elemental consistency from one structure to another to ensure people understand their connection, but, the degree to which these NU buildings look cookie-cutter is completely unnecessary.

Also... spyguy... that wasn't the rendering I was thinking of... in fact, I've never even seen that one before! Thanks for posting it though
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Old January 10th, 2006, 09:26 PM   #625
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A little more on the Union Station project:

http://globest.com/news/450_450/chicago/141836-1.html

Union Station Topper Plan Rises Again
By Mark Ruda

Last updated: January 10, 2006 05:55am

Jones Lang LaSalle and two former executives of the real estate firm are the latest to attempt to bring Daniel Burnham’s vision for Union Station to its long-awaited fruition. Amtrak subsidiary Chicago Union Station Co. is giving Jones Lang LaSalle and its partner, Youssefi-Scott Development Co., a chance to strike a $250-million redevelopment deal that would add an 18-story tower atop the 80-year-old railroad terminal.


Most recently, Prime Group Realty Trust proposed a $200-million mixed-use project that would have added 180 condominiums, 400 hotel rooms as well as 500,000 sf of office space above the Union Station’s Headhouse Building. Before the REIT’s financial crunch derailed the project, it had hired architect Lucien LaGrange, who ironically had drawn up plans about 20 years earlier for another developer before Tax Reform Act of 1986 torpedoed US real estate markets.

Burnham’s designs included a tower above the station, but he died before the station was completed. Jones Lang LaSalle has been involved in the redevelopment of two other buildings designed by Burnham, Symphony Center in Chicago and Union Station in Washington, DC.

“Our goal is to perpetuate Burnham’s historic vision for Union Station and at the same time create a state-of-the-art, mixed-use facility that includes office space built for the 21st century,” says Hossein Youssefi, whose company also includes Stuart Scott. “Union Station will be an architectural jewel as we extend the Burnham Chicago tradition to the West Loop.”


Bounded by Clinton, Canal, Jackson and Adams streets, Union Station already is Metra’s busiest commuter rail station, serving 120,000 passengers a day in addition to more than 6,000 Amtrak riders. The Jones Lang LaSalle partnership envisions preserving the Great Hall, exterior and rooflines. The redevelopment is not expected to affect Amtrak and Metra operations, but would convert 500,000 sf of vacant railroad offices into new uses.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 10:05 PM   #626
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WOW, those rendering of Union look VERY intriguing.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 01:46 AM   #627
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyguy
Concrete is attractive? Especially for a Hospital?
^Well concrete certainly can be attractive.

I just don't see why everybody thinks that everything has to be 100% glass to be attractive any more. I think everybody is a bit fed up with the River North tan concrete boxes that we got in the late 90's and now there is a stigma.

If you ask me, the current design for the Prentice Hospital says "Chicago" more than any 100% glass structure does. And this is coming from somebody who loves modern architecture and wants Chicago to be at its leading edge.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 01:49 AM   #628
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyguy
They build on top of it? There were some renderings I posted some pages ago about this that were designed by Lucien Lagrange.

Edit: In case I didn't post it:

^The buildings pictured above look like 2 completely different designs. Kind of harkens back to the Harold Washington Library with its classic facade on 3 of its 4 sides but modern-looking on 1 side
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Old January 11th, 2006, 01:58 AM   #629
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I think the 3rd rendering is just a cross section of the building so you can see the atrium more clearly, not really an opening on one side, although I can't be sure.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 08:51 PM   #630
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From today's Sun-Times. Will anybody be able to make it to that meeting highlighted in bold?

New housing, shopping eyed for South Loop

January 11, 2006

BY DAVID ROEDER SUN-TIMES COLUMNIST Advertisement



Developers have long-term goals for up to 2,000 new housing units, a shopping center and a 16-screen movie theater in the South Loop, according to insiders who have seen plans drafted for community groups.

The property runs northwest of Roosevelt and Clark, site of a Target store. The vacant parcels are divided among several interests, including Concord Homes, Amli Residential, Centrum Properties and the construction firm Walsh Group.

The Centrum piece fronts on Roosevelt east of Wells and would include a megaplex that Kerasotes Theatres has signed a letter of intent to operate, said Dennis McClendon, development chairman of South Loop Neighbors. The civic group has invited the developers to discuss the projects at a meeting tonight. It's scheduled for 7 p.m. at Grace Place, 637 S. Dearborn. Their representatives declined to comment or could not be reached.

ELYSIAN FIELD: There have been a few bumps and detours on the development road for David Pisor, president of Elysian Worldwide Chicago LLC, which wants to build a high-class hotel at 11 E. Walton. But the site has been cleared, and Pisor said he expects to head to City Hall for a building permit in about seven days. With luck, he'll be able to break ground on the 60-story building in the spring.

Since ending a partnership with Michael Reschke, Pisor has brought in partners for their cash and construction know-how. The majority owner of the venture is Atlanta-based Arcapita Inc., and Chicago's Golub & Co. joined for a minor equity stake and as construction manager.

Pisor said 70 percent of his units have been sold and all financing is in place. The building promises 185 hotel units, which are among the first in Chicago to be sold to investors, and 51 private, richly appointed residences.

Golub, meanwhile, has become exceedingly busy in its own right. The company is into heavy marketing on 345 E. Ohio, a planned 49-story apartment tower it calls the Streeter. It has closed on the purchase of the CBS studios at 630 N. McClurg, although a high-rise project there is at least several years off. And Executive Vice President Lee Golub said the company wants to buy downtown office buildings. Early in 2005, it bought 225 W. Washington for about $100 million.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 09:07 PM   #631
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...i-business-hed

A windfall for Wacker tower's quick seller

Thomas A. Corfman
Published January 11, 2006

Zeller Realty Corp. is working on a deal to buy 300 S. Wacker Drive from the New York investment firm that bought the tower just a few months ago, in a transaction that reflects differing views of the West Loop office market.

Chicago-based Zeller would pay $91 million for the 512,000-square-foot building, roughly $11 million more than Broadway Real Estate Partners LLC paid in August for its first Chicago acquisition, sources said.


While Zeller is betting on a resurgence in the market, Broadway may have a more bearish view, and likes the quick profit. Zeller is still conducting due diligence research on the deal, sources said.

Robert Six, senior vice president with Zeller, declined to comment.

Check in the mail? After signing a contract for 181 W. Madison St., DECT Corp. has failed to make a required multimillion-dollar earnest money deposit, raising questions about whether the little-known firm backed by Japanese money can complete the $307 million deal, sources said.

Kazuyuki Fukushi, DECT's chief executive, declined to comment. The firm has told insiders it would finance the transaction with a loan from Tokyo-based Aozora Bank Ltd.

For the time being, the seller, Prudential Real Estate Investors, a unit of the New Jersey financial-services giant, continues to work with DECT. A Prudential spokeswoman declined to comment.

Amid the uncertainty, DECT's other $300 million deal, buying 311 S. Wacker Drive from Chicago-based Walton Street Capital LLC, is on hold, sources said. DECT did not sign a contract for that building.

Citigroup Center lease: In a little-noticed deal, the U.S. General Services Administration has taken 92,900 square feet of space at Citigroup Center, said John Murphy, executive vice president with MB Real Estate Services LLC, which manages the building.

Under the 10-year lease the Education Department will occupy nearly 85,000 square feet of the space at 500 W. Madison St., a slight increase from its current location at 111 N. Canal St., a GSA spokesman said.

The Education Department, which will move next January, has cut back its space needs, and the remaining space may be subleased or taken back by the landlord, the spokesman said.

REIT expands offices: First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. has expanded its offices by half, to 66,000 square feet, as part of a 12-year lease extension at 311 W. Wacker Drive that kicks in later this year, said Gregg Witt, senior vice president with CB Richard Ellis Inc., which advised the Chicago real estate investment trust.

Rents inch up: The meager improvement last year in the vacancy rate for top-quality, so-called Class A office space was matched by rents, according to a report by tenant representative Studley Inc.

Average asking rents, including taxes and operating expense, rose 1 percent, to $29.37 a square foot, during the last year. Asking rents are "list prices" and do not include the value of incentives, such as build-out expenses and free rent.

"Concessions are still, in general, Costco-product sized," said Richard Schuham, executive vice president with Studley, referring to the retailer known for its bulk sales.

Although downtown is showing signs of reviving, with strong leasing activity last year, asking rents are well below the peak of nearly $34 a square foot in 2001. Meanwhile, the amount of available office space, including sublease space, fell to 18 percent during the fourth quarter from 18.5 percent during the year-earlier period, Studley says.

Warehouse space: The North American unit of Royal Philips Electronics has signed a five-year lease for a 307,300-square-foot warehouse at 220 Medinah Rd. in Roselle, said Thomas Barbera, a vice president with Trammell Crow Co., which represented the landlord, CenterPoint Properties Trust.

Not much higher

Landlords' asking rents for top-quality downtown office space showed scant improvement during the fourth quarter, compared with the same period in 2004.

FOURTH QUARTER
SUBMARKET 2005 CHG 2004
West Loop $28.98 2.0%
LaSalle St $28.62 4.0%
Central Loop $34.01 5.5%
Michigan Ave. $28.20 2.5%
River North $28.48 2.0%
South Loop $33.59 -3.7%
Total $29.37 1.0%
Source: Studley Inc.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 09:08 PM   #632
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...i-business-hed

Tower sale completed

Tribune staff, wire reports

Published January 11, 2006

As expected, a joint venture of two Chicago firms, GlenStar Properties LLC and investment partner Walton Street Capital LLC, completed the purchase of 55 E. Monroe St., a 50-story tower in the East Loop, in a $239 million deal. Office tenants in the 1.6 million-square-foot building were told about the closing in a memo distributed on Dec. 23 by New York's Tishman Speyer Properties LP, the building's former manager and co-owner.

Chicago-based real estate firm Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. represented the seller, a venture that included investors advised by German syndicator GENO Asset Finance GmbH, a unit of Citigroup Asset Management. The GlenStar/Walton St. venture plans an eventual residential condominium conversion of as much as the top 14 floors of the bulky structure. Two Chicago firms, Pappageorge/Haymes Ltd. and Goettsch Partners, are likely to be the architects for the residential redevelopment.
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Old January 12th, 2006, 01:55 AM   #633
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Crap! I would like to go to that meeting tonight cuz the development is kitty-corner to my new condo... but I have to go to the Hawks game... Is anyone planning on attending?
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Old January 12th, 2006, 07:39 AM   #634
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..

Last edited by Loopy; June 14th, 2010 at 09:08 PM.
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Old January 12th, 2006, 08:34 AM   #635
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Wow. Thanks for the summary and attending. Sounds pretty cool to me.
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Old January 12th, 2006, 10:53 PM   #636
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Here's an article:

http://chicagojournal.com/main.asp?S...D=1238&TM=5611

The skinny on Clark and Polk gets mixed reviews
Concord Homes would build 1,000 condos in three thin high-rises

By MAX BROOKS, Staff Writer


Though the most vocal opponents of the Concord Homes plans for three thin high-rises at Clark and Polk made occasionally strident protests during an unveiling of the development at the Dearborn Park Advisory Council Jan. 4, the overall reaction from the neighborhood residents in attendance was mixed.

While Concord Homes had originally called for a mix of town houses and towers that would have brought just fewer than 300 new units to the area, the new blueprints more than triple the size of the project by replacing the mix of buildings with three high-rises that will contain just more than 1,000 units and nearly as many parking spaces, according to Concord Homes attorney Bernie Citron.

"[The Department of Planning and Development] said they preferred more slender towers," Citron said, explaining that the design would minimize the impact of the new development on the views and light levels of those living across the street and residents in nearby Dearborn Park, just a block away.

He said a revised cost-benefit analysis based on the current market and more stringent infrastructure demands on the site had forced Concord Homes to add more units to the site.

The towers, according to plans presented at the meeting, would be scattered across the site in checkerboard formation.

The first tower to be built would rise 30 stories above Polk near Clark over six levels of parking that would extend back toward the railroad tracks to the west. The second tower, also the development’s tallest at well more than 300 feet, would rise 35 stories over four stories of parking at the eastern end of the lot. A final tower would come 32 stories from the ground at the corner of Clark and a new, one-block-long stretch of Ninth Street that Concord Homes will be required by the city to build, Citron said.

Though several of those in attendance expressed minor concerns with aspects of the plan—fears about the city’s future plans for Ninth Street and an increase in traffic, worries about how the development would interact with a tower proposed by Terrapin Properties just across Polk Street to the north—the most vocal criticism came from Peter Ziv, a member of the board at the Folio Square building, 124 W. Polk, that stands across Polk Street from the Concord Homes site.

Ziv paced before the crowd after the developer’s initial presentation, doing his best to inject passionate resistance into the meeting.

"This does not have to happen, and I suggest we fight this hammer and tong," Ziv said.

Citing the Department of Planning and Development’s 2003 Near South Community Plan, Ziv said the increase in traffic the building would bring to Polk Street opposed the document’s call for Polk Street to remain a pedestrian throughway.

"Do you think another 1,000 cars coming down Polk Street every day is appropriate?" he asked.

But Citron, along with Luay R. Aboona, a traffic consultant from Transportation and Parking Planning Consultants, said they expected half or fewer of the residents to use their cars to commute to work on a daily basis, explaining that many buyers in downtown condo towers typically move to the area so they won’t have to commute and want a space only to store their car to use it for weekends and errands. Citron also argued that the construction of Ninth Street heading west from Clark did not mean the city plans to extend it east through Dearborn Park. At 66 feet across, the new block of Ninth Street would be wide enough to accommodate traffic running both ways.

"If we didn’t have to build [Ninth Street], we wouldn’t," Citron said, addressing the concerns of some of those in attendance that the city has its eye on extending Ninth Street to the east through Dearborn Park.

Citron also took issue with Ziv’s assertion that the upsizing of the plans represented a "bait and switch," saying that the developer had not yet received approval for any plans and would continue to work with community members and the DPD in preparing its application for the planned development zoning the towers will require. Michael Hernandez, president of the Dearborn Park Advisory Council, said he has been largely pleased with Concord Homes’s efforts to keep the neighborhood up to date.

"Concord has been one of the more active and responsible developers as far as communicating with community groups," Hernandez said.

Additionally, Citron said, Concord Homes would include a green space in the space between all the buildings. In the current formation, the second tower is set back 180 feet from Clark Street, with 200 feet in between the two towers at the extreme north and south ends of the plot.


While the green space would be privately owned and maintained, Citron explained, it would be meant for public use. For example, he said, a dog walker would have no problem cutting from Ninth Street to the town houses along Clark by walking diagonally through the Concord property.

The current plans also call for a private utility drive, accessible off Polk Street, to absorb many of the 975 vehicles for which the plans provide space, with one curb cut along Clark leading to an internal driveway to absorb the rest.

Near the end of the meeting, neighborhood resident Dorothy McKinney offered a deluge of queries that touched variously on plumbing, traffic, views, and flooding, as the members of the development team looked on in frustration and tried to deal with the questions one by one.

The issue of flooding, in particular, produced a visible reaction from the developers, as they nearly tripped over one another to tell McKinney that the towers’ green roofs and accompanying open space would make the site much less of a flooding hazard than its current formation as an asphalt parking lot.

After the meeting, Citron said that initial work on the infrastructure of the site might begin as early as April or May. If the plans are approved, Citron said, construction on the first and northernmost tower would not begin until June of 2007.
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Old January 13th, 2006, 08:07 AM   #637
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Thanks guys, especially Loopy we all appreciate the info that you provided.

Oh, and welcome to the forum Loopy

Quick question: that "boulevard" that extends north from Roosevelt and ends in a cul-de-sac. Is it actually a cul-de-sac or one of those T intersections?
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Old January 13th, 2006, 11:37 AM   #638
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..

Last edited by Loopy; June 14th, 2010 at 09:08 PM.
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Old January 13th, 2006, 08:34 PM   #639
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loopy
Remember, this is not typical street planning. Like Riverside Park across the street, the plans call for building a new neighborhood forty feet in the air. And in Centrum's case, I believe that it is also built directly over some rail tracks.
It almost sounds like Park Avenue north of Grand Central Station in New York.
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Old January 14th, 2006, 03:19 AM   #640
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loopy
I would call it a boulevard and a very large-radius cul-de-sac.

I don't recall exactly, what Solomon Cordewell Buenz (Centrums Archi) called these features. Remember, this is not typical street planning. Like Riverside Park across the street, the plans call for building a new neighborhood forty feet in the air. And in Centrum's case, I believe that it is also built directly over some rail tracks.

I will try to describe it again: The main feature of Centrum's project is an elevated mixed retail/residential "strip" that is connected to Roosevelt on the South with a wide opening, accomodating traffic and pedestrians, terminating at the North end with the Kerasotes theater complex.

The "boulevard" looked like it would have two lanes in (from Roosevelt), where your choices would be to ramp down to parking or continue on to the theater "cul-de-sac" where you could drop-off or pick-up and continue only by completing the radius and exiting on one of the two lanes out.

This may be a crude analogy, but It might be helpful:

Picture a four-lane access road with a landscaped median with State Place on both sides, River East 21 on the end and three levels of parking below.

Now when the renderings come out you can cite this post as a good example of the weakness of visual memory!
^Hmmm.... Perhaps I am just not visualizing this well, but I'm surprised they would build a cul-de-sac here, since that could cause some access problems. I would make more sense for the street to at least turn right and merge into Clark. Interesting, I just hope it is well-developed and maintains the excellence of other downtown Chicago developments
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