It was a monumental year for Chicago construction. And this blog was around to watch 7/12 of it. So here, in no particular order, are the 14 Best Things This Blog Saw in 2016:
St. Boniface Church Is Saved
When demolition is involved, nothing stirs our collective emotions like losing a church. St. Boniface Church in Noble Square got a demo permit, but was spared from the wrecking ball at the 11th hour.
625 West Adams puts a tower crane right outside the window
625 West Adams was the subject of this blog’s very first post. I was rewarded with a tower crane right outside the living room window. And as an added bonus, the fine folks at Power Construction invited me down for a walking tour of foundation work.
151 North Franklin puts a tower crane over the sidewalk
After completely misunderstanding the type of crane to be utilized at 151 North Franklin in The Loop, they erected one anchored by the coolest of iron supports, hovering above the Franklin Street sidewalk.
The Apple Store puts up a crane three stories high
When building a two-story structure, one of which will be underground, you don’t need much height from your tower crane. Take a walk past the new Apple Store at 401 North Michigan Avenue, and you can just about high-five the crane operator.
Simpson-Querrey Biomedical Research Center puts up 2 tower cranes
As long as the city permits, anyone can have a tower crane. But few can match the Simpson-Querrey Center. There are *two* tower cranes hard at work on the Northwestern University facility.
Onni Group lights up their tower crane at Atrium Village
Just as they did at The Hudson for Christmas 2015, the Onni Group decked out their tower crane at Atrium Village in Tron-like lighting.
The amazing outdoor ceiling at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
By all means, drive carefully at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab! But also make sure to look up at the wonderfully colorful ceiling above the entryway.
215 West Lake/Level Apts/Linea surrounds itself with 3 parking garages
Ironically, a parking garage was demolished to make room for (what’s now called) Linea. There are still parking garages remaining on three sides of the construction site, allowing for lots of different viewing angles.
River Point opens
Honestly, it deserved more fanfare. But River Point opened in November, including River Point Plaza, the acre-and-a-half park overlooking the Chicago River.
One Bennett Park begins construction
Some people think One Bennett Park looks like something New York City would build. I’m one of them. And I say that in a good way. This will be a fun one to watch. (Of course, they’re all fun.)
Vista Theater begins
You know those surgical theaters hospitals have for teaching? (Think Seinfeld and Junior Mints.) Then you understand work happening at Vista Tower along Wacker Drive. With elevated observation areas all around, it’s a great place to kill a few hours, watching caissons disappear into the earth.
St. John Cantius Church is open for OHC20
As part of Open House Chicago 2016, St. John Cantius Church opens its doors to the public. And for good reason. It is simply spectacular inside.
Visiting New York City’s mind-boggling skyscraper craze
They’re building ’em big in New York City. And they’re building a lot of them. I got to see a few during a quick visit in October.
THE CUBS BUILD WORLD SERIES WINNER!! And some other stuff.
A hotel. An office building. A WORLD SERIES CHAMPION! Forget the rebuilding years. The Chicago Cubs are in a Construction Renaissance.