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Old July 26th, 2005, 11:52 AM   #81
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Great news for Chi-town but whats up with these supertalls and cheap spires its slightly taller than the sears but then a few steel poles going up 500ft with the freedom tower and now this america is officially gonna be the cheaters of supertalls
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Old July 26th, 2005, 11:57 AM   #82
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Nothing wrong with spires as long as they make architectural sense--which Calatrava's obviously does--and as long as we acknowledge the fact that they don't really "count" in height. So this building is eight feet taller than Sears; that's still a ******* tall building.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 12:53 PM   #83
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Proposed building would be nation’s tallest

July 26, 2005


Chicago's lakefront would get a contender for the title of tallest building in the United States under a developer's plan devised in partnership with Santiago Calatrava, one of the world's foremost architects.

Christopher Carley, chairman of Fordham Co., has shown city officials Calatrava's plan for the Fordham Spire, a hotel/condo tower at 346 E. North Water, where the Chicago River meets Lake Michigan and across Lake Shore Drive from Navy Pier.

At 115 stories, the tower would be 1,458 feet to its roof, taller by eight feet than the roof of Sears Tower. But the Calatrava building would include a spire that, depending on structural details, would bring the building to around 2,000 feet.

'Financiers are in awe of this man'

Renderings of the Fordham Spire show a tall, slender, ethereal building whose glass-and-steel surface cascades down a central concrete core. The floor slabs are cantilevered out from the core, with each rotated about two degrees from the one below. As they rise, the floors turn 270 degrees around the core, creating an undulating effect like a gown or cloak.

"I know that Chicago is an Indian name, and I can imagine in the oldest time the Native Americans arriving at the lake and making a fire, with a tiny column of smoke going up in the air," Calatrava said. "With this simple gesture of turning one floor a little past another, you achieve this form."

Carley said the task of lining up money for the possibly $500 million building "has been the easiest in my career'' because of Calatrava, best known in the U.S. for his 2001 addition to the Milwaukee Art Museum and his planned transit hub at New York's Ground Zero. "Financiers are in awe of this man."

So are many architects. "He's a fabulous architect and structural engineer," says Chicago's Adrian Smith, a partner at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. "I love the sculptural quality of his work, how he relates the shape of his buildings to the structural forces in them. His work is very beautiful -- not often steely or tough, but usually highly refined and soft and sensual. He's one of a kind."

Location: 346 E. North Water
Height: 1,458 feet to the roof, about 2,000 feet counting spire
Stories: 115
Square footage: 920,000
Projected cost: more than $500 million
Building use: 200-250 condos, 200-250 hotel rooms, retail and parking at the base
Possible construction start: May 2006
Possible completion: 2009
Developer: Fordham Co.
Architect: Santiago Calatrava

Political, financial hurdles

The main questions for the Carley-Calatrava team are whether the structure, planned as a mix of condominiums and hotel units, can be financed and whether it is politically realistic. It falls within the Streeterville neighborhood, a concentration of well-to-do residents increasingly irritable over new high-rises in their midst.

For Carley, meanwhile, the building would be a step up in the development game. After years of putting up multifamily housing around the Midwest, he entered the downtown market in the late 1990s and completed three major condo buildings, a low-rise at 65 E. Goethe and high-rises at 21 E. Huron and 25 E. Superior.

All catered to wealthy buyers. Sales were slower than expected and Carley had to refinance his loans. He said all his lenders have been repaid and that his relationships with them are good.

His company has a contract to buy the 2.2-acre site from affiliates of Chicago-based LR Development Co. LLC.

Carley said his confidence in completing the building "is more than [for] any project I've ever done because the city administration appreciates great architecture.'' He said he courted Calatrava for three years before finding a site suitable for the architect's artistic and engineering gifts.

Will neighbors support plan?

But in the end, the partnership was forged by "personal chemistry,'' Carley said. "I think he was impressed by my dedication to the city and my desire to do something for the city.''

While his plan could stir controversy, it plays into Mayor Daley's pronounced desire to have top-flight architects leave an imprint in Chicago. Also, Carley employs the law firm of Daley & George, whose name partner is mayoral brother Michael Daley. The firm has one of the busiest zoning practices in the city.

Carley said city planners saw the project's details in May and were impressed by the curved, flowing profile of the building. A spokeswoman for the city's Planning Department said the agency would not comment on the design until developers submit a formal zoning plan.

Carley said his plan needs a zoning variance to change the height limitation on the site. And therein lies an argument he'll use against any critics.

Current zoning, he said, lets him put up two buildings on the site in the range of 35 and 50 stories. Going taller and skinnier will minimize blockage of sunlight and views, Carley said.

In addition, he said a Calatrava building will raise property values for the neighbors.

It's not known if the residents will buy that argument. Rosalie Harris, executive director of the Streeterville Organization of Active Residents, said the group has been shown only a few details of the project and not enough on which to form an opinion.

The group orchestrated a campaign against a proposed 64-story tower near the landmark Fourth Presbyterian Church at Michigan and Delaware, causing the local alderman to come out against it.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 12:56 PM   #84
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Height of PR: Altitude brings bragging rights

July 26, 2005


The height of the proposed Fordham Spire -- which at 1,458 feet would be the tallest building in Chicago and the nation, not counting the spire that would top it out at about 2,000 feet -- is the least important thing about it, its architect and developer say.

"There is nothing special about being the highest, and that has never been our goal," architect Santiago Calatrava insists. "The important thing was to find the right shape. To create the slender, ethereal effect we want, it was necessary for it to be very tall. But if it were 10 feet shorter than the Sears Tower [which is 1,450 feet], it would make no difference."

Fordham Co. chairman Chris Carley adds that the attention given to the Fordham Spire's height is mostly "a distraction from the fact that it's a great building by a great architect."

'A major selling point'

But that hasn't stopped the Fordham Spire's public relations campaign from trumpeting the phrase "nation's tallest building" prominently in its press materials -- for which there's a good reason.

"There's a tremendous amount of PR value to developers and architects in going after the title of 'nation's tallest building' or 'world's tallest building,' " says Chicago architect Adrian Smith, the designer of what will be the world's new tallest building -- a mixed-use tower of "substantially more than 2,000 feet," that is scheduled for completion in 2008 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

"It heightens the visibility of the project and becomes a major selling point," says Smith, a partner at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. "In the case of Dubai, for example, they're trying to become a tourist destination in the Middle East and build the city into an economic center."

Besides, consumers are simply drawn by the "tallest" moniker, as evidenced by the fact that the Dubai building's apartments and condominiums were sold out within three days of the project's announcement.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 12:57 PM   #85
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Originally Posted by oshkeoto
Nothing wrong with spires as long as they make architectural sense--which Calatrava's obviously does--and as long as we acknowledge the fact that they don't really "count" in height. So this building is eight feet taller than Sears; that's still a ******* tall building.
Exactly! This doesn't beat the sears tower by . It's a great tower I think, that'll add a new element to the chicago skyline. A lot of people here don't like it as they say it stands out too much but I really like the fact that it adds something new. Fair play to Chicago!
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Old July 26th, 2005, 12:58 PM   #86
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Spaniard is newest 'starchitect'

July 26, 2005

BY KEVIN NANCE Architecture Critic

Santiago Calatrava, the architect of the proposed hotel/condo tower that would be the tallest in the nation, is the world architecture scene's newest superstar -- part of a small group of "starchitects" that includes Frank Gehry, Renzo Piano and Rem Koolhaas.

A Spaniard with offices in Zurich, New York and his hometown of Valencia, Calatrava, 53, is best known in the Midwest for his striking addition to the Milwaukee Museum of Art, which Time magazine recognized as one of the best buildings of 2001.

He leapt even further into the limelight with a new transportation hub at New York's Ground Zero and several structures for the Athens Olympics sports complex. Last year, Calatrava won the American Institute of Architects' Gold Medal for his contributions to the field.

'You're adding a master'

"We sponsored a speech that Calatrava gave in Chicago a couple of years ago and it was a complete sellout," said Tom Kerwin, president of the AIA's Chicago chapter and a partner at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. "He's a wonderful architect who creates beautifully built forms that combine the two disciplines of architecture and structural engineering."

Also trained as a sculptor, Calatrava produces imaginative, sensual works of an artistic ambition and sculptural freedom perhaps matched only by Gehry. Often, Calatrava's work seems "organic" -- inspired by natural shapes such as birds or fish -- or anthropomorphic, related to the human form. This fall, New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art will present an exhibition of his sculptures, drawings and models.

"I think it's exciting that there's a Calatrava building in the city," said Lynn Osmond, president and CEO of the Chicago Architecture Foundation. "We say that our city's a museum, and anytime you add a new building like this one, you're adding to our collection. And you're adding a master, at that."
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:02 PM   #87
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Tower would get city in touch with its feminine side

July 26, 2005


The tradition of Chicago architecture is a manly one, and not only because virtually all of its best-known architects (notwithstanding current rising stars Carol Ross Barney and Jeanne Gang) have been men. From Jenney to Sullivan to Mies, the signal qualities of great buildings in the City of Big Shoulders have had masculine connotations: a pumped-up muscularity, a solidity, a broadness. We're particularly defined by our tall buildings, and can anything be more phallic than a skyscraper? Symbolically speaking, we're a metropolis of satyrs.

But if his proposed Fordham Spire manages to clear the regulatory, political and financial briar patch that now lies before it, Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava will bring something startlingly new to the Chicago skyline: a feminine mystique.

Although he tends to distance himself from interpretations of his designs as "organic" or anthropomorphic -- the evocative nature of his work, he claims, is usually a byproduct of structural considerations -- Calatrava has designed a building that looks for all the world like a tall, stately woman in a flowing, gauzy gown that swirls around her legs. It's exactly the manner of Ginger Rogers on a dance floor with Fred Astaire: the ethereal lightness, the illusion of movement. You're ready to fly down to Rio whenever she is.

You find this sensuous, even sexy quality in the unlikeliest corners of Calatrava's output. It's there in his bridges and transit stations, which are often topped with curving, undulant structures that hint at a feminine languor, of which I think the architect is at least partly aware.

The evidence is in his preparatory doodlings for projects like the Liege Railway station in Belgium, which include a watercolor sketch of a voluptuously reclining female nude; the station roof's curves echo hers. There's more of this kind of thing in his Fordham Spire sketchbook, which is full of lithe dancers straight out of Matisse.

Joining the boys club

Then there are Calatrava's interior spaces, many of which are as genital as anything in the famously humid flower paintings of Georgia O'Keefe. (The artist always denied that she intended any such imagery, and maybe she didn't, but failing to see it requires an act of willful blindness.) The exterior of Calatrava's addition to the Milwaukee Art Museum is often compared to a bird spreading its wings, but look inside at the main hall and you'll see, in its bisected ceiling and related ornaments, wings of a different sort.

It's a tricky business, politically and otherwise, to impute gender characteristics to inanimate objects, but of course we do it all the time. In our Anglo-Saxon lexicon, ships are female; so are certain countries and, in fact, the Earth. In the Romance languages, including Calatrava's native tongue, every noun is assigned a feminine or masculine article. If he thinks of bridges, airport terminals, train stations and even skyscrapers in terms of the female, why not?

And if this produces a building that adds a fresh element to the boys club of Chicago architecture, cherchez la femme.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:02 PM   #88
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woah... i dont think it is advisable to build a 450+ meters condo building..
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:05 PM   #89
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:20 PM   #90
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:23 PM   #91
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Wow!! What awsome renderings
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:28 PM   #92
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I actually like it fits in with the skyline very well and looks so much better then all the dark buildigs. Hopefully they actually build it.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 01:56 PM   #93
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I like the design, but I'm not sure whether it would suit Chicago - looks rather thin and spindly amongst the surrounding boxes.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 02:14 PM   #94
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its awesome!

I hope this really gets built though.................................
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Old July 26th, 2005, 02:24 PM   #95
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Great news. I really like the tower: sexy, tall, glassy, slender and wonderful.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 02:49 PM   #96
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Chicago is definitely one of the skyscraper capital of the world and have some of the finest projects / buildings under construction in NA...

I can't wait to see it grow...
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Old July 26th, 2005, 03:04 PM   #97
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Tallest tower to twist rivals
Trump blasts iffy edifice that would put his in shadow

By Blair Kamin and Thomas A. Corfman
Tribune staff reporters
Published July 26, 2005

It would twist into the sky over Chicago's lakefront like an oversized birthday candle, surpassing Sears Tower and the planned Freedom Tower in New York as the nation's tallest building.

It might, or might not, be built. But it already is drawing fire from Donald Trump, who scaled back his plans for a record-shattering Chicago tower of comparable height after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

A far less well known developer, Chicago's Christopher Carley, will unveil his proposal Wednesday for a slender, 115-story tower with a steel spire that could soar higher than 2,000 feet.

Designed by superstar Spanish-born architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava, the skyscraper would rise next to Lake Shore Drive and near the entrance to Navy Pier. Its tapering glass facade would ripple like folds of drapery.

For Carley, the chairman of Fordham Co., the planned hotel and condo tower would be taller than the combined height of his last three previous projects: two towers of roughly 50 stories and an eight-story structure.

Financing for his latest project has not yet been arranged, and will largely depend on achieving prices rarely seen in a downtown market. "Is this going to get done?" Carley said. "It'll be market-driven."

But the ambitious proposal, to be called Fordham Spire, would dramatically shift the focus of Chicago's skyline, and it likely faces community opposition and the challenge of obtaining financing in what some are calling an overheated real estate market.

In addition, some contend, it must confront the specter of terrorism.

"In this climate," said Trump, whose tower might compete with the new skyscraper for luxury condominium buyers, "I would not want to build that building. Nor would I want to live in that building.

"Any bank that would put up money to build a building like that would be insane," he said.

Carley shot back that Trump's Chicago tower is playing in the same supertall league because it will be 1,360 feet tall, just 90 feet less than Sears.

"I wonder where the insanity limit is. It must be just over 1,360 feet," he said.

The verbal jousting suggests that Fordham Spire offers a test of whether the nation's post-Sept. 11 fear of heights is easing, nearly four years after hijacked jetliners crashed into the World Trade Center. Some experts say they see less fear on the skyline.

"I remember after 9/11 a lot of people announcing the end of the skyscraper," said Ron Klemencic, chairman of the Chicago-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, which monitors skyscraper construction worldwide. Now, he said, "the aversion to building tall . . . has diminished."

The Tribune revealed in May that Carley was working with Calatrava--the architect of the bird-like Milwaukee Art Museum addition, the Athens Olympics sports complex and the planned transportation center at Ground Zero--to design a tower on at least one of two sites along the west side of Lake Shore Drive and the north bank of the Chicago River.

Under Carley's plan, those sites would be combined into a single 2.2-acre parcel at 346 E. North Water St. The area is now an unruly patch, filled with overgrown grass, gravel, trees and a construction trailer.

From it would sprout a tower utterly different from the boxy forms found elsewhere on the Chicago skyline: A skyscraper with gently curving, concave outer walls attached to a massive reinforced concrete core.

Each floor would rotate a little more than 2 degrees from the one below. The floors would turn 270 degrees around the core as they rise, making the building appear to twist.

A spire above would soar to roughly 2,000 feet, making Fordham Spire taller than the 1,776-foot Freedom Tower, scheduled for completion in 2010, but not as tall as a tower now being built in the United Arab Emirates.

Called the Burj Dubai and designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill of Chicago, that behemoth is expected to reach to about 2,300 feet--the actual height is a closely guarded secret--and become the world's tallest building when it is finished in late 2008.

Currently, the world's tallest building is the Taipei 101 in Taiwan, a 101-story structure that rises about 1,670 feet.

Calatrava denied that topping the 1,450-foot Sears Tower was his, or the developer's, objective. He contended the Fordham Spire's height reflected his search for ideal proportions.

The goal "is not the highest, or the widest, but a building that wants to be special, a step beyond," he said in an interview from his Zurich office.

Carley added: "If I had my druthers, I'd like to have Sears retain the title. If Santiago thinks it's essential, fine."

Still, because of its height, the tower can be expected to become a lightning rod for opposition in the affluent, highly organized Streeterville neighborhood.

"Some people will be excited to have a landmark in their neighborhood, and some people are going to be horrified that they're going to have such a tall building so close to them," said Jim Houston, president of the Streeterville Organization of Active Residents.

The influential neighborhood group has not yet taken a position on the project.

After protests from neighbors about blocked views and increased traffic congestion, the area's alderman, Burton Natarus (42nd), recently announced he would oppose the Fourth Presbyterian Church's plan to erect a 64-story residential tower on a portion of its historic Michigan Avenue property.

But the usually cautious Natarus said Monday that he supports the Calatrava tower.

"It's going to put Chicago on the map," he said. "I'm not concerned about height. And I'm not concerned about density, because it's a sliver."

Carley and Calatrava noted that the skyscraper's thin profile--it would have just 920,000 total square feet, compared with 4.5 million for Sears Tower--would make it a benign, not overbearing, presence along the city's lakefront.

That is far better, they maintain, than two towers of roughly 50 and 35 stories, which current zoning allows. Towers of that size would be far more bulky and cast greater shadows, the developer and architect argue.

"The tower is without any doubt tall, but it is not big. It is very slender. It is extremely slender," Calatrava said.

At City Hall, reaction to the project was guarded.

"We saw the plan and we'll consider it," said Connie Buscemi, a spokeswoman for the city's Department of Planning and Development.

Besides the political hurdles, Carley must confront history, which shows that it is easy to unveil plans for a supertall tower but far harder to get one built.

Since the 110-story Sears Tower was built in 1974, several developers have floated plans for supertall towers in Chicago, including the 125-story Miglin-Beitler Tower in 1989 and the 112-story 7 S. Dearborn project in 1999.

Yet only Trump actually has gotten such a project under way. His 92-story hotel and condo tower is now under construction along the Chicago River.

Still, Carley has less product to sell than Trump. Even though it would be taller than the Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago, the Fordham Spire would have far fewer units--about 200 hotel rooms compared with 286 for Trump, and between 200 and 250 condos compared with 472 for Trump.

Carley said formal marketing will not begin until September, and construction will not start until there are sales agreements for about 40 percent of the units. He wants to break ground in March and finish in 2009.

Prices at the Fordham Spire must average $650 a square foot just for Carley to break even, sources said, making the project one of the most expensive in the city and approaching Trump's, where the prices are said to average $750 a square foot since marketing began. That translates, roughly, to condos valued at between $6.5 million and $7.5 million.

And local developers were skeptical of Carley's plan, citing escalating construction costs.

How it stacks up

- 2,000 feet to top of spire, taller than the 1,776-foot Freedom Tower

- 920,000 total square feet, compared with 4.5 million for Sears Tower

- Up to 250 condos, compared with 472 for Trump's Chicago tower

- Condos would likely be valued between $6.5 million and $7.5 million

- - -

Tallest building in North America proposed

A proposed hotel and condominium building on the lakefront would tower over other Chicago landmarks.

Fordham Spire / Proposed - 2,000 ft. / 115 floors

Sears Tower - 1,450 ft. / 110 floors

Trump Tower / Under construction - 1,136 ft. / 83 floors

Aon Center - 1,360 ft. / 92 floors

John Hancock Center - 1,127 ft. / 100 floors

Freedom Tower / Planned - 1,776 ft. / 82 floors

Note: Antennae are not included in a building's height. A spire may be considered an architectural component of the building and be included in the height. Renderings are not in proportionate scale. Ceiling heights may differ, accounting for numbers of floors.

Sources: The Fordham Co., Emporis
Chicago Tribune

Copyright © 2005, Chicago Tribune
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Old July 26th, 2005, 03:04 PM   #98
Que paza!!!
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It's great, I like it!, it's much better tan Freedom tower, but I'm begining to worry about Clatrava's works

1st, Malmö

2nd, Valencia

3rd, Napoli

And now...

Last edited by Victhor; July 26th, 2005 at 03:12 PM.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 03:14 PM   #99
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^What are you getting at? I think there are a lot of architects out there that worked on the same form over and over, trying to perfect it. Take Mies, for example. Even Pelli has done it with 2IFC and other likenesses. I don't think an architect should be expected to come up with something completely new everytime he/she is given the oppportunity to design another building.
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Old July 26th, 2005, 03:16 PM   #100
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I wish the design wasn't so monotonous througout...looks like a blue twizzler. I think Chicago needs a more bold/majestic structure with a little more thought put into it. This one doesn't satisfy me.
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