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Old April 24th, 2007, 09:08 PM   #141
Flubnut
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Originally Posted by BorisMolotov View Post
Monsters? You mean the Olympic Village? Isn't the highest only like 16 stories? I'd hardly call those monsters. There is a large height difference between 44 stories and 16 stories, but I don't even think that they're that high.
FYI: Olympic Village is south of McCormick, along the lakefront. The train tracks running along the west side of LSD, south from Roosevelt(16th) are where the air rights, and potentially tallest 'guaranteed lake view' buildings could go.

Or maybe I'm the one who's totally and utterly confused...
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Old April 24th, 2007, 10:18 PM   #142
ErmDiego
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Actually, quite recently one of my coworkers told me about a friend who bought a condo in Central Station where she was guaranteed lake views "for life". Only to have Central Station build another high rise a year or two later that blocked those guaranteed lake views. I can't remember exactly what my coworker said the deal was, but I remember at the very least that some residents were considering taking legal action; not sure if they actually have (or will) take legal action yet. To me, that seems extremely shady - not only did they guarantee views when they thought that it was possible that some other developer's building could block those views; they guaranteed views when they themselves built a new building that blocked those views.

So ErmDiego - I find it funny that rip on Frankel & Giles, and other developers, yet constantly praise the developers of Central Station...considering the shady sh*t that they pulled (not to mention, all of their comleted buildings are friggin' ugly (the OMP buildings look like they should be nice, at least)). I am guessing that this might be a clue your ulterior motives, which would help explain your arguments and rants against X/O.
Read the Central station deeds closely of you own one. Depending on the unit, it is clear what is guaranteed and what is not. There are certain buildings where they can guarantee an angle of view, and others full views. With the air-rights purchase they have some leverage in holding some or all of the east views. High rise people crying about spoiled views, the nerve

Regarding X/O and Frankel & Giles - Wrong design, wrong location, wrong developer.
I have dealt with almost all of these developers in regard to either purchase or investment, or in other public capacity. Living in the South Loop since 1996, I have also paid close attention to all of the buildings from construction to post construction, and there are two developers than come up visually or in discussion with high probablity of problematic development. Warman and Frankel & Giles (who now are partnered on Astoria Tower). I have also lived through problems with Frankel & Giles, who despite being give $2MM TIF Loan up front on project in South Loop, bailed despite problems with crumbling facad, structural issues, did not install emergency lighting, screwed up easments, unaccounted funds at turnover. (I encourage you to talk to folks at Roosevelt Hotel, 8th and Wabash, Dearborn Towers, Filmworks). I would be willing to bet we will be here talking about problems with Prairie District Lofts in two years...

As to Warman, don't take my word for it - here is review of some of his work:

http://www.suntimes.com/classifieds/...main20.article
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index....6&format=print
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Old April 24th, 2007, 10:36 PM   #143
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read it closer?....I was part of the development of that plan and I am not sure what you think I misstated....

xo is NOT in the historic district....

F&G's marketing is irrelevant....
slooparch, respectively, my point is that the distinction of in the Historic or outside does not matter, as the plan called for recommendations anywhere inside the entire District depending on location. Also, during the public discussion, the same developer tried to disarm protection issues to the Plan Commission by citing your same comment, while these lemmings did not bother to read the rest of the recommendations on their own.

To date, whether folks feel it is quality or not (not the issue), all of the developers have generally respected or followed the Near South Community Plan to date, be it character, scale, setback, or architecture. The result of discussing and building to some assemblance of plan has led to the transformation of the area to what it is today (A character district desirable to many, and a higher % family oriented area, with the goal of many to stay in the city) and generally an agreeable development relationship with the community (other than the post quality issues). Now you have one developer who has demonstrated a relavent history of skirting his view of what is legal instead what is right, that now feels he is immune to the foundation and respect that others have laid....etc., etc., etc.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 12:22 AM   #144
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Originally Posted by ErmDiego View Post
slooparch, respectively, my point is that the distinction of in the Historic or outside does not matter, as the plan called for recommendations anywhere inside the entire District depending on location. Also, during the public discussion, the same developer tried to disarm protection issues to the Plan Commission by citing your same comment, while these lemmings did not bother to read the rest of the recommendations on their own.

To date, whether folks feel it is quality or not (not the issue), all of the developers have generally respected or followed the Near South Community Plan to date, be it character, scale, setback, or architecture. The result of discussing and building to some assemblance of plan has led to the transformation of the area to what it is today (A character district desirable to many, and a higher % family oriented area, with the goal of many to stay in the city) and generally an agreeable development relationship with the community (other than the post quality issues). Now you have one developer who has demonstrated a relavent history of skirting his view of what is legal instead what is right, that now feels he is immune to the foundation and respect that others have laid....etc., etc., etc.
clearly, this is a personal and emotional issue with you regarding this particular developer....in my experience, the quality of the architect, and the degree in which they are involved in construction administration, has a much more significant impact on the quality of the building then the developer's past experience...Bill Warman, by the way, used his own architectural firm for his problem-plagued and extremely unfortunately designed projects....

as far as the South Loop Community Plan is concerned, it is a masterplan which, by definition, is a set of guidelines....

most architects will tell you that to respond sensitively to as well as complement historic architecture one must not mimic it....the Glessner House, as I am sure you are aware, was a ground-breaking contemporary structure when it was built....a building that it's Prairie Avenue neighbors violently opposed

It appears that you are interpreting the masterplan inappropiately (and inconsistently as I have been following this thread) to buttress the developer vendetta.....
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Old April 25th, 2007, 06:30 AM   #145
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Originally Posted by ErmDiego View Post
To date, whether folks feel it is quality or not (not the issue), all of the developers have generally respected or followed the Near South Community Plan to date, be it character, scale, setback, or architecture. The result of discussing and building to some assemblance of plan has led to the transformation of the area to what it is today (A character district desirable to many, and a higher % family oriented area, with the goal of many to stay in the city) and generally an agreeable development relationship with the community (other than the post quality issues).
^ Uh, no. The result has lead to some of the most banal architecture of our time. I don't mind the townhomes, but I really can't stand most of the earlier batch of towers that have gone up in Central Station. Perhaps you should consider how important architectural design really is to a lot of people on this forum.

The problem with your argument is that you're trying to convince us of something that most of us don't really care about. We care about ARCHITECTURE, the URBAN ENVIRONMENT, and what these developments mean for US and the cityscape as a WHOLE. I don't care whether or not Frankel and Giles built a bunch of pipes, screwed over some investors, or didn't build emergency exits. Whatever--let the buyers decide those things
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Old April 25th, 2007, 08:30 AM   #146
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^ Uh, no. The result has lead to some of the most banal architecture of our time. I don't mind the townhomes, but I really can't stand most of the earlier batch of towers that have gone up in Central Station. Perhaps you should consider how important architectural design really is to a lot of people on this forum.

The problem with your argument is that you're trying to convince us of something that most of us don't really care about. We care about ARCHITECTURE, the URBAN ENVIRONMENT, and what these developments mean for US and the cityscape as a WHOLE. I don't care whether or not Frankel and Giles built a bunch of pipes, screwed over some investors, or didn't build emergency exits. Whatever--let the buyers decide those things
Right on, TUP....and given X/O's great sales so far, apparently the buyers have decided that they really like what Frankel and Giles have to offer in the X/O development.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 04:36 PM   #147
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clearly, this is a personal and emotional issue with you regarding this particular developer....in my experience, the quality of the architect, and the degree in which they are involved in construction administration, has a much more significant impact on the quality of the building then the developer's past experience...Bill Warman, by the way, used his own architectural firm for his problem-plagued and extremely unfortunately designed projects....

as far as the South Loop Community Plan is concerned, it is a masterplan which, by definition, is a set of guidelines....

most architects will tell you that to respond sensitively to as well as complement historic architecture one must not mimic it....the Glessner House, as I am sure you are aware, was a ground-breaking contemporary structure when it was built....a building that it's Prairie Avenue neighbors violently opposed

It appears that you are interpreting the masterplan inappropiately (and inconsistently as I have been following this thread) to buttress the developer vendetta.....
Agree about Glessner house, but it was three stories and you have to drive on front of it to see it. It's not 45 stories. I do giggle at the self comparisons by the Architect of X/O and Glessner though...a little over the top.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 04:48 PM   #148
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Agree about Glessner house, but it was three stories and you have to drive on front of it to see it.
^ Everywhere, both here and at YoChicago, all I hear is "drive this" "drive that". Do Prarie Ave people just drive to the Glessner house these days? Seriously, like do Chicagoans walk in your neighborhoods at all?
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Old April 25th, 2007, 04:49 PM   #149
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Sales

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Right on, TUP....and given X/O's great sales so far, apparently the buyers have decided that they really like what Frankel and Giles have to offer in the X/O development.
Sales or investor holds?...I invite you to study their prior marketing and pre-sales practices then. Talk to folks at 212 E. Cullerton...hint, take a look at the project partners behind the scenes.

With some of the major projects in Central Station, River East, on Michigan Avenue, there is a fair amount of visable foot traffic. I have yet in the last 12 years seen anything like it their claims of sales; that sales center has been dead. They had a mass mailing event this prior weekend that, I shit you not, had 3-4 cars in the lot maximum. They must be relying on outside Chicago sales...
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Old April 25th, 2007, 05:20 PM   #150
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Originally Posted by ErmDiego View Post
Sales or investor holds?...I invite you to study their prior marketing and pre-sales practices then. Talk to folks at 212 E. Cullerton...hint, take a look at the project partners behind the scenes.

With some of the major projects in Central Station, River East, on Michigan Avenue, there is a fair amount of visable foot traffic. I have yet in the last 12 years seen anything like it their claims of sales; that sales center has been dead. They had a mass mailing event this prior weekend that, I shit you not, had 3-4 cars in the lot maximum. They must be relying on outside Chicago sales...
Sales.

I went to their sales office a few months ago to check out the model, and it was packed. Just because there aren't cars in the lot doesn't mean anything...while you might use your car all the time, even to drive two blocks over to the Glessner House, most people in the city actually aren't that lazy, and walk, take public transportation, etc.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 06:52 PM   #151
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Agree about Glessner house, but it was three stories and you have to drive on front of it to see it. It's not 45 stories. I do giggle at the self comparisons by the Architect of X/O and Glessner though...a little over the top.
you are right....although I would call Glessner 2 stories.....and, guess what, when Richardson designed Glessner, there were not any 45 story buildings in the entire city.....it was not technically feasible...

naturally, if we let your logic govern the development of the city, we still would not have any 45 story buildings....

although I realize good design is somewhat subjective, the last contemporary tower that LaGrange designed won a AIA award for design excellence....
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Old April 25th, 2007, 07:04 PM   #152
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Well, there's also the fact that it was approved illegally, in violation of the city's adopted plan for the area.
It was adopted as a guideline.

And if what they are doing is illegal (Which I and many of us don't think is), this is one law I'm glad their breaking, because it's a ******* stupid law (if that's what it really is) that should have never been approved

Break - break - break away....


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No loophole needed. Plan Commission (and DPD staff) just didn't bother to look at the plan.
Congratulations to them for having the sence to know they did something stupid in the first place. They're just correcting their error.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 08:58 PM   #153
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Originally Posted by ErmDiego View Post
http://egov.cityofchicago.org/city/w...OID=-536886455

slooparch, you may want to read the plans a little closer. The plans are relevant for the entire District, not just the Historic Portion. The height, material, and character recommendations were for area outside the Historic District as well. Frankel & Giles try to say the same thing, but then their advertisment claims the are in the middle of this Historic District...a little misleading.

The South Loop Community Plan called for less than 100 feet on Prairie, 18th, Cullerton, and 285 feet elsewhere, with consideration for set-back, while a gradual progression in height to 16th. 45 stories is not gradual, and not even close to what was envisioned. But for the right amount of money to the Alderman, and someone else in City Hall, you too can do whatever you want.
What is your idea of gradual then?
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Old April 25th, 2007, 09:12 PM   #154
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Originally Posted by ErmDiego View Post
Read the Central station deeds closely of you own one. Depending on the unit, it is clear what is guaranteed and what is not. There are certain buildings where they can guarantee an angle of view, and others full views. With the air-rights purchase they have some leverage in holding some or all of the east views. High rise people crying about spoiled views, the nerve

Regarding X/O and Frankel & Giles - Wrong design, wrong location, wrong developer.
I have dealt with almost all of these developers in regard to either purchase or investment, or in other public capacity. Living in the South Loop since 1996, I have also paid close attention to all of the buildings from construction to post construction, and there are two developers than come up visually or in discussion with high probablity of problematic development. Warman and Frankel & Giles (who now are partnered on Astoria Tower). I have also lived through problems with Frankel & Giles, who despite being give $2MM TIF Loan up front on project in South Loop, bailed despite problems with crumbling facad, structural issues, did not install emergency lighting, screwed up easments, unaccounted funds at turnover. (I encourage you to talk to folks at Roosevelt Hotel, 8th and Wabash, Dearborn Towers, Filmworks). I would be willing to bet we will be here talking about problems with Prairie District Lofts in two years...

As to Warman, don't take my word for it - here is review of some of his work:

http://www.suntimes.com/classifieds/...main20.article
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index....6&format=print

So then it's personal for you???? That explains so much more now...

Wrong design, wrong location??

Why and how so? Because of some half assed plan? You think Prairie District is a good design? You want some PoMo schlopp there instead?
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Old April 25th, 2007, 10:23 PM   #155
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It was adopted as a guideline.
I don't know what this means. The Chicago Plan Commission adopted the Near South Community Plan. You can look it up. There was no "signing statement" limiting its scope.

If this developer were satisfied with the existing zoning, they could simply build a project with an FAR of 5 that's less than 150 feet. They want to build more, so they have to request a PD, and there are certain rules for a PD. One of those--no surprise--is that a planned development must follow the adopted plan.

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And if what they are doing is illegal (Which I and many of us don't think is)
I've cited the plain text of the municipal ordinance. Please explain what provision of statute or case law overrides the ordinance.

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this is one law I'm glad their breaking, because it's a . . . stupid law (if that's what it really is) that should have never been approved
Do you have a list somewhere of the laws that it's permissible to break?
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Old April 25th, 2007, 11:37 PM   #156
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I don't know what this means. The Chicago Plan Commission adopted the Near South Community Plan. You can look it up. There was no "signing statement" limiting its scope.

If this developer were satisfied with the existing zoning, they could simply build a project with an FAR of 5 that's less than 150 feet. They want to build more, so they have to request a PD, and there are certain rules for a PD. One of those--no surprise--is that a planned development must follow the adopted plan.



I've cited the plain text of the municipal ordinance. Please explain what provision of statute or case law overrides the ordinance.


Do you have a list somewhere of the laws that it's permissible to break?
Although there has been great focus on this word “must” , the actual community plan (which, by the way, is still in draft form), includes language such as “suggested” and “should”, both words are clearly not mandatory……

Even considering the context in which “must” is used, it is combined with a significant qualifier: “consistent”…..consistent within a master plan is always open to interpretation….
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Old April 26th, 2007, 01:49 AM   #157
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Slooparch, thanks for your commentary. Its nice to hear from someone who worked on the plan that is not so insistent that it is followed spec per spec (especially when the language used, as you pointed out, is not concretely defined). Listening to Ermdiego and Mr Downtown, I was beginning to wonder if this plan somehow differed from other neighborhood plans that are mostly used for guidelines and recommendations, in that it was to be followed like some written contract.
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Old April 26th, 2007, 01:59 AM   #158
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Just some pics of the small park next to it:

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Old April 26th, 2007, 05:31 AM   #159
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Mr Downtown and ErmDiego are our inhouse NIMBY's, and their presence gives us some good insider rep. They use their intelligent minds for evil (ie NIMBYism) instead of good (kick-ass development that inspires).

Please, no angry replies, I'm just poking some fun here..
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Old April 26th, 2007, 06:14 AM   #160
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Mr Downtown and ErmDiego are our inhouse NIMBY's, and their presence gives us some good insider rep. They use their intelligent minds for evil (ie NIMBYism) instead of good (kick-ass development that inspires).

Please, no angry replies, I'm just poking some fun here..

Keep your friends close, and your enemies even closer.
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