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Old August 24th, 2005, 07:08 AM   #41
Lower Wacker
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yea i was up in the jhc observatory tonite and u can clearly see 50 e. chestnuts site it'll be very cool to see it rise from the top of the hancock along with the possibility of the 4th presybatarian tower and the elysian etc i rly hope that 4th presybatarian will get built cuz that will make for a great trio a park tower, 4th pres., and 900 n mich. btw the hancock observatory will be so amazing after fordham, trump and waterview are done if they are that is.
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Old August 24th, 2005, 10:30 AM   #42
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^ I hate to be bearish on Chicago projects, but I want to be realistic. The fact that there are a lot of wealthy people in Chicago does not mean there is enough demand to swallow both Fordham and 50 East Chestnut. True, 50 East Chestnut consists of only 32 residences, but there are a small group of people in the top market. You can't consider simply everyone who can afford a $3 million (or whatever) condo, only those people who can afford it AND who are in the market *in the city* at this particular time. From what I hear, Chicago is not terribly great at minting new millionaires compared to more economically dynamic locales, and so the demand is probably growing rather slowly.

Also, I would be really surprised if enough globetrotting multimillionaires from Europe and elsewhere were interested in buying a Chicago pad to make a serious dent in Carley's pre-construction sales obligations. Maybe there will be 5-10 of these people, at most, no?
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Old August 24th, 2005, 06:55 PM   #43
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As of 1997 (yes old stats...but I am at work and cannot keep searching for more recent stats) there were over 230,000 Chicagoland Millionaires. 260 units doesn't sound so high...relative to that market. All we need is .0011 percent to buy an apartment in the FS....

I am trying to be blindly optimistic.

http://www.bizjournals.com/houston/s...27/story4.html
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Old August 24th, 2005, 07:24 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChicagoLover

Also, I would be really surprised if enough globetrotting multimillionaires from Europe and elsewhere were interested in buying a Chicago pad to make a serious dent in Carley's pre-construction sales obligations. Maybe there will be 5-10 of these people, at most, no?
^I"m surprised at this supposition. Given Chicago's international business presence, I think it would be easy to find numerous wealthy people willing to buy a condo in such a glitzy project as the Fordham Spire as their in-town residence.

Also, Chicago3rd's point is also quite good. I find it silly that so many Chicago forumers don't think there are enough rich people in the Chicago area to support this project. Money is what makes Chicago run--it's almost as if you guys have spent too much time in Chicago and lost your sense of perspective. Have you actually been to most other American cities? They would kill to be able to build a Millennium Park
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Old August 24th, 2005, 09:10 PM   #45
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^ Very true. LA is using Millenium Park as a model for their Grand Ave. developement. In fact, they've hired the same master planner for the park component, I believe from SOM.
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Old August 25th, 2005, 12:26 AM   #46
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Chicagoland has 230,000 millionares. 260 units? Come on. We arent even counting ultra rich business travelers with a chance to OWN a condo in America's tallest skyscraper desgined by one of the hottest architects in the world. Give me a break. FS will get built and sell successfully.
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Old August 25th, 2005, 12:42 AM   #47
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I'm not saying whether or not FS will get built... but, it certainly won't be for a lack of market. If there were 200,000+ millionaires in Chicagoland nearly ten years ago, imagine what that number looks like now? A million dollars simply isn't that much money in this day and age - every new building that rises in Chicago anymore has units that run well in excess of a million, so, why not make an entire building where that is the case? There are thousands of MLS listings in and around Chicago that are for properties worth over a million dollars... those sellers are moving somewhere else for presumably the same money (or more), are they not?
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Old August 25th, 2005, 04:49 AM   #48
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^Maybe the money class is moving downtown.

What started off as a trickle has become a trend - the more there is of the money class in a particular area the more likely other people with money would want to live there. Anyway, downtown Chicago is cheap compared to the much of the coast's major city's downtown.
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Old August 25th, 2005, 06:14 AM   #49
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Well I certainly hope you guys are right that Chicago can support all of this high-end housing. Of course, I don't have any real solid sense of the market, as I'm lacking real data. But I 'm just thinking there seems to be so much product on the market in Chicago's upper-most bracket--the unsold Trump condos, Waterview Tower, 50 East Chestnut, the Fordham Spire, and penthouses and near-penthouses in various other buildings that are coming online. It just seems like a particularly unusual amount of product. A number of years ago, I recall that reporters in Crain's and elsewhere were talking about a perceived glut in the highend market, at that time created by 800 North Michigan, and the Sterling on Rush street, among others. Now it seems that high-end supply is even larger than at that time, both in terms of number of units, and in terms of the dollar per square foot required to build these premier properties. Maybe demand will keep apace with supply, but I think there's a distinct chance it won't. I don't put a lot of stock in developers' stated expectations, given the boom-and-bust cycle inherent in the real estate market.

Also, I don't see the lower price of Chicago's highend to be a 'plus' in the sense of attracting people from the coasts to this market. I think it may be more the case that the lower price in Chicago *reflects* relatively weaker demand. I'm certainly very far from an economist, but I think its the case that home prices reflect an equilibrium reached between supply and demand. If Manhattan was losing people to Chicago in substantial numbers, prices there would decrease, or prices here would increase. High-end salaries in Chicago are often lower than in NYC, possibly even for what might seem from the outside like pretty comparable jobs. I have read, for example, that the top partners at the prestige law firms in NYC will bring home $1 million +, whereas in Chicago it might be $500,000...

In my extremely crude mental calculations, when I think of the people capable of affording condos of say, $2.3 million and up, I'm thinking: high end executives at sizable firms, top partners at law firms and other partnerships like accounting and consulting firms, the occasional entrepreneur who sold out and reaped millions, the occasional high end surgeon or MD specialist .. I have a general sense of the large and midsized corporations and subsidiaries in Chicago, and the business service firms that serve them, and I keep thinking, how can there be enough to fill all of these towers? Over half of these people live may be hardcore suburbanites living on the North Shore, or maybe Oakbrook. Maybe I'm missing a vast group of these people.. I hope so.

Last edited by ChicagoLover; August 25th, 2005 at 06:24 AM.
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Old August 25th, 2005, 07:15 AM   #50
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^That's just it.

The issue isn't whether there is enough wealth in the Chicago area to support this. That's a silly question.

The issue is whether downtown can attract all of that wealth. 5-6 years ago when the Sterling and others were pre-construction, there was still a degree of insecurity about that.

But as downtown's boom has forged ahead, and as Block 37 looks likely to get developed and with the completion of Millennium Park, there is a growing confidence in the downtown market. Developers are pushing the envelope of luxury that downtown can, indeed, capture a larger percentage of the region's wealth than previously perceived. As the central area gets more crowded and lively, this will only continue, I'm sure.... Plus, it actually helps Chicago that so many other downtowns are booming throughout the country--it is creating a nationwide shift in development patterns so that Chicago doesn't feel like the exception to the rule--thus attracting even more suburbanites who don't like to go against the grain.

Regarding the price difference between the coasts and Chicago, that's obviously due to a lower demand in Chicago. Even though Chicago is such a dynamic and robustly awesome city, it unfortunately suffers from the "midwestern town" syndrome, which pulls down its real estate values.
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Old August 25th, 2005, 08:30 AM   #51
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lower demand in downtown Chicago? Please show me a city on either the East or West coast that sells as many units a year as downtown Chicago. Miami is 85% speculation, btw. Of built condos in downtown Chicago there are only just over a hundred unsold. Of course buildings that have sales of unsold units seem bad but remember these buildings haven't even started construction yet. People like to buy a finished product, quite simply.
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Old August 25th, 2005, 04:17 PM   #52
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It isn't lower demand. Its too much supply that keeps it down. Places like LA and SF aren't able to build enough housing because of NIMBYs. Manhattan has run out of room for new housing, and NIMBYs affect some projects there too. Chicago has a very healthy supply, and NIMBYs don't really get in the way. The places that are low in new supply in Chicago such as Gold Coast, the average condo/home is SF/Manhattan like prices. If not enough housing is built in Chicago, you will see the prices skyrocket here. Its that simple, supply and demand.
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Old August 26th, 2005, 01:51 AM   #53
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To say that Chicago lags behind the coasts so badly in the cost of high-end housing is silly. There are only three cities in this Nation where downtown housing approaches and surpasses downtown Chicago numbers (NY, Miami and SF). No other coastal cities even really have any sort of housing in their core to even compare; save for, perhaps, Seattle.

ChicagoLover - you left out one VERY sizeable group of Chicago professionals that are able to afford multi-million dollar properties: the boys on LaSalle street. Let's not forget about the millionaires walking the floors of the CBOT and the Mercantile exchange - Chicago's importance to the World's financial markets is surpassed, in this nation, only by New York - and that leaves us with a very large group of very successful people on the trading floors of our several large exchanges.
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Old August 26th, 2005, 02:31 AM   #54
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Chicago has several large law firms that pay big salaries...Im not worried. A place like Miami would have more problems. Miami doesnt have the white collar employment of Chicago or NYC, even DC or SF.
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Old September 23rd, 2005, 03:19 AM   #55
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Has not started constructed yet, but really close. The crane is up, the kelly bar and drilling tools on the site. The drilling motor just needs to be attached to the crane, and this one is ready to rock and roll....


Lets hope the work crews make extra noise to piss off the Connors Park NIMBY group headquartered next door.

The Clare demoliton still moving along...
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Old September 23rd, 2005, 03:22 AM   #56
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Such an amazing turnaround. A few months ago we thought this was a goner and now it's about to start.
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Old September 24th, 2005, 02:17 AM   #57
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50 East Chestnut is now officially inder construction also. I drove by the site no more than 10 minutes ago, and there were several caisson tops sunk in the back northeastern portion of the site.

So 2 building officially got there start today.
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Old September 24th, 2005, 02:18 AM   #58
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NICE. Thanks for the update.
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Old September 24th, 2005, 06:19 PM   #59
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Wow, this and 600N LSD. When is the last time 2 highrises greater than 400 feet started construction on the same day?
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Old October 6th, 2005, 04:27 AM   #60
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CHICAGO, Oct. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- James McHugh Construction Co. begun
construction of 50 East Chestnut, a $47 million condominium tower that will
only offer full-floor homes, on Chicago's Gold Coast, McHugh officials
announced.
Located at the northeast corner of North Rush and Chestnut streets, the
39-story building will feature retail and parking on its first five floors,
with a green roof system and rooftop garden atop that base then residences
rising in a slender tower above it. McHugh is currently overseeing demolition
work at the site, with first move-ins scheduled for May 2007 and completion
slated for late 2007.
Developer for the 222,000-square-foot building is Chicago-based Jameson
Development LLC, for whom McHugh also is building Jefferson Tower in the West
Loop. Architects are Chicago's Solomon Cordwell Buenz Associates.
The 34-unit condominium tower will offer only one home per floor. All
homes will include two terraces, on east and west sides of the building. The
39th floor will feature a fitness center. Homes will feature high ceilings,
ranging from 9-1/2 to 11 feet, wood floors in living areas, custom cabinetry,
and high-end fixtures and finishes that include Wolf kitchen cooking
appliances, Bosch dishwashers, stone floors with embedded radiant heat in
master baths, and crown molding throughout the homes. The homes will range in
size from approximately 3,579 to 3,937 square feet. Most will feature three
bedrooms plus a library and 3-1/2 baths.
The environmentally sensitive "green roof" system, encouraged by the City
of Chicago, features landscaping planted on roofs to help reduce urban heat
accumulation, absorb stormwater runoff, and improve air quality. McHugh teams
will haul up topsoil via crane or lift, and install garden beds atop the
waterproofed, sealed roof of 50 E. Chestnut's base, said Sarah Morie, McHugh
project manager.
The exterior of 50 East Chestnut will include precast concrete with a
street-level granite fagade on the five-story pedestal base. Painted concrete
will comprise the exterior for the residential tower.
McHugh is self-performing concrete work for the cast-in-place structure,
along with rough and finish carpentry, and is also handling interior buildouts
for the homes. To support the building, the team is drilling 46 caissons.
Founded in 1897, McHugh is one of Chicago's oldest and largest general
contracting, construction management and consulting firms. More information is
available at http://www.mchughconstruction.com .
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