Act II at Atrium Village is in full caisson mode

Atrium Village Phase Two caissons

Case Foundation is at work in Near North, drilling caissons for Atrium Village Phase Two.

The tower crane is gone from Old Town Park in the Near North neighborhood, but it will be replaced on the same block very soon. Onni Group is doing foundation work on the next phase of the Atrium Village redo, with Case Foundation on site drilling caissons at this very moment.

There isn’t much I can tell you about Phase Two besides what we find in the building permit, which the City of Chicago issued for 202 West Hill Street back on December 8, 2017. That permit calls for a Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture-designed 39-story tower, including a 6-level parking podium, with 428 apartments. Onni Group will act once again as their own builder. Someday soon, this tower is likely to get a fancy new name. We hope.

Progress Update: The Hilton Hotel combo rises in the South Loop

1101 South Wabash

Lendlease continues upward on the Hilton Homewood Suites/Hilton Garden Inn in the South Loop.

That’s not just a hotel Lendlease is building at 1101 South Wabash Avenue in the South Loop; it’s two hotels. The combination Hilton Homewood Suites and Hilton Garden Inn got started last winter, and is at, or near, the half-way point of its 30-story goal. Two architecture firms,  Lothan Van Hook DeStefano Architecture and Pappageorge Haymes Partners, were involved in the design, one for each hotel segment.

One of Chicago’s longest-running shows, No. 9 Walton lowers the curtain on its tower crane

No. 9 Walton tower crane

The tower crane at No. 9 Walton is slowly lowering itself to the ground, one segment at a time.

If you thought No. 9 Walton at 9 West Walton Street in the Gold Coast neighborhood topped out months ago, and that it seemed strange how long that hammerhead tower crane remained aloft, you were on to something. While we can’t confirm anything, we’ve got our suspicions that the $58.5 million sale for the top four floors may have had something to do with the longevity of the crane. (Dennis Rodkin over at Crain’s Chicago had the scoop back in January.)

The stub was planted at No. 9 Walton in March of 2016, after getting its permit on the first of February. By my calculations, that’s about two years ago. That’s a long time for a tower crane to be on a job site, especially one that’s “only” 38 stories high.

No. 9 Walton is a project from JDL Develoment. You may recall hearing that JDL’s president and founder, James Letchinger, had set aside a unit in this tower for himself. That’s a pretty good indication he’s paid very close attention to every facet of its construction.

The design was by Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture. Lendlease handled the GC duties.

Expect No. 9 Walton to be open in 2018.

Atrium Village gets a permit for Tower #2

Atrium Village 202 Hill Street permit

The permit, issued Friday, for 39 stories at 202 West Hill Street.

We don’t know much, but we do know there’s a brand-spankin’-new permit for the second tower at Atrium Village in the Near North neighborhood. Just as Onni Group appears ready to take down the tower crane at Old Town Park, the City of Chicago granted a permit on Friday to begin foundation work on the second tower, at 202 West Hill Street, of the Atrium overhaul.

This one will be 39 stories high, with 428 units above a six-story podium, and some ground-floor retail space. As with Old Town Park, Onni Group will be their own general contractor, and Hartshorne Plunkard is the design architect.

Sure, we look forward to another tall building, but we’re more anxious to see Onni light up another tower crane!

Onni Group lights up the Old Town Park tower crane. Again.

Onni Group glow crane

The moon and the glow crane were out Sunday evening at Old Town Park.

For the second year in a row, Onni Group has strung some serious lights on the tower crane hovering above Old Town Park in the near North neighborhood. Of course, it was still Atrium Village at this time last year. Not to mention construction had barely risen above street level. But now, Old Town Park is topped out at a full 31 stories, and glass has reached the 25th floor, or thereabouts.

Folks, let me just tell you that glow-in-the-dark tower cranes are THE. BOMB. Chicago needs more of them. I would love to see this become a trend here. But at least Onni gets it right. Two years ago, they also lit up the tower crane at The Hudson for the holidays. So kudos to them for their three-year streak. Will we see another this time next year when the next Atrium Village phase is underway?

First of four towers rising at Ruby in Gold Coast

Ruby Gold Coast Phase One

The first of the four Ruby towers is growing in Gold Coast, Queensland.

Ruby is a four-phase development project coming to Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. Phase One, a 30-story, 228-unit apartment tower, is underway. Developed by the Ralan Group, Ruby’s subsequent stages, all designed by DBI Designs, will include towers of 60, 47, and 32 stories, if the remaining three on the board all are approved. They’ll combine for a total of 1,372 additional units, along with lots of shopping apace, restaurants, and other attractions, including a skating rink! There can’t be too many of those in Surfers Paradise, right?

Hutchinson Builders is doing the heavy lifting. They were approaching the halfway point of the Phase One tower when we walked by in October. The Ruby website says work will be done late this year; Hutchinson Builders is very good, but that seems to be an unlikely goal at this point in November.

Hey neighbor! Pappageorge Haymes hangs a shingle at the South Loop Hilton Homewood Suites

Hilton Garden Inn Hilton Homewood Suites South Loop

Pappageorge has designed new space at 1101 South Wabash for a Hilton Garden Inn.

This was a surprise.

Well into construction of the Hilton Homewood Suites just around the corner from the B.U.C. HQ at 1101 South Wabash in the South Loop, Pappageorge Haymes has gotten involved in the project, as evidenced by their new banner hanging on the construction barrier.

Pappageorge Haymes tells us they came on board to design a new portion of the project for a Hilton Garden Inn component, which will now be co-branded with Hilton Homewood Suites. While the tower is still slated to rise to 30 stories, there may have been an increase in the room count, which has now grown to 342 per PH, up from 281 which we had previously reported.

In the meantime, Lendlease continues upward progress on the hotel tower at the corner of 11th and Wabash. The seventh floor is poured, and the eight floor deck is approaching the halfway point.

Shout-out to Michael and Jason at Columbia College, who arranged for me to go upstairs at 1104 South Wabash to get the overhead shots you see in the gallery.