They grow up so fast, One Chicago Edition

I remember you when you were little.

It doesn’t seem that long ago, when the parking lot across State Street from Holy Name Cathedral was being torn up, and foundation digging began.

Now, One Chicago is almost to that point where, if you want to see what’s happening with construction, you have to go inside.

Once again, this is your One Chicago team: JDL Development, with a hand from Wanxiang America, is the developer. Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture and Goettsch Partners shared design duties. And Power Construction is the general contractor.

There are only a couple floors of curtain wall left to install on the east tower, but we still have one tower crane to savor here, so let’s make the best of the rest of our time together. (Cue dramatic music)

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300 North Michigan continues to rise, continues to block views of other things. Just like every other building does everywhere

Skip floor markings are visible to 36. My math says the additional 4 floors puts 300 North Michigan at the 40th floor.

Come at me if you want to, but there’s a new brand of NIMBYism out there these days: Instead of just complaining about a building blocking the view from your living room, you now get to complain about a new building blocking your view of something else, but not when you’re at home. No, this pertains to being out and about throughout the city. Or from that one particular spot you like to stand. This is next-level stuff.

Such seems to be the case with 300 North Michigan. Folks are upset that it will block the view of the Carbon and Carbide Building across the street. How about that. The rules are now such that you can’t build anything anywhere that will obstruct the view of anything anywhere. Looks like our next skyscraper will have to be built in DeKalb. (But I can’t see my corn field from the water tower now!)

Anyway, this is what 300 North Michigan looked like Monday, July 26. Using the markings on the skip, it looks like Linn-Mathes has reached the 40th floor, with the elevator core a couple stories higher, on their way to their ultimate 47-story height:

Like the photos? Appreciate the attitude/snark? No? Still, you can help offset expenses with a much-appreciated donation to Building Up Chicago.

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A foundation update from The Reed at Southbank

A quick look around The Reed at Southbank Monday showed an awful lot of piles driven into the South Loop soil, with lots more stacked up waiting their turn. I only saw one caisson above ground, and that was there on my most recent trip June 21 (part of the “vertical access shaft” work, I think). I thought to myself, Self? Are they doing piles before caissons? Are the caissons done already? Are there only piles and no caissons? In the June photo, you’ll notice there were already piles of piles to be driven.

My conclusion? I don’t know. But I have some photos to show you.

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Site prep is underway for The Couture on Milwaukee’s lakefront

Rendering of The Couture from Rinka Chung Architecture.

Four years ago when I last visited Milwaukee, it looked like The Couture was a good bet to be the next tower crane along Lake Michigan.

I was wrong. For the most part. Luckily I didn’t have any money on it.

There’s still no tower crane, but site prep for The Couture has begun, as crews rip out the remnants of the concrete slab that once supported the Milwaukee Transit Center, and get the site ready for foundation work.

The Couture will be a 44-story tower at Clybourn Street, Lincoln Memorial Drive, and Michigan Street. The prime site will offer sweeping views of the lake, the stellar Milwaukee Art Museum, and the annual home of Summerfest, Henry Maier Festival Park.

Early info on The Couture had it including up to 600 units (residents? residences? hmm). Recent features, including this one from Urban Milwaukee, show a much lower number, with 322 apartments and 40,000 square feet of commercial space.

Barrett Lo Visionary Development is The Couture’s developer; Rinka Chung Architecture is the design architect. (They’re hiring! See the website for more info, plus animated renderings.) J.H. Findorff & Son is the general contractor.

Enjoying the photos? Metra and CTA rides, Zipcars, Divvy Bikes, camera lenses, and comfortable walking shoes are adding up. You can help offset expenses by making a greatly-appreciated donation to Building Up Chicago.

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The Reed at Southbank scores its foundation permit

The foundation permit, issued June 7.

FOUNDATIONS ONLY PERMIT FOR THE NEW CONSTRUCTION OF A HIGH RISE RESIDENTIAL BUILDING

And with those words, issued by the City of Chicago Monday, The Reed at Southbank may begin construction. Lendlease is the general contractor, with McHugh Concrete doing the concrete work. (Note: in “official” contractor-speak, the tower crane “belongs” to the concrete contractor. But around here, we aren’t diligent enough to find and name all the sub-contractors on construction projects, so the general contractor is credited for the tower crane. We don’t mean to slight anyone; it’s just how we do it.)

The Reed at Southbank will be the second tower at Lendlease’s Southbank development. Its first, The Cooper, opened in 2018. The Reed, also designed by Perkins + Will, will be a 41-story mix of apartments and condominiums

They’ve been out there tearing up the ground for while now, prepping the site and doing that vertical shaft thing we mentioned before. But now it’s time for the real fun to start.

Rendering from The Reed at Southbank website.

Glass Update: 300 North Michigan’s still got it goin’ on

Because when you start glazing a skyscraping, you don’t just stop.

300 North Michigan got the first of its curtain wall about a month ago, and it’s getting shinier by the day. It’s also growing more visible above some of its neighbors, with a great view of it from Fulton Street in the West Loop.

Earth is being moved at The Reed at Southbank

Drilling an individual vertical shaft (layman’s term) for The Reed at Southbank.

“Vertical access shafts” are a thing. Which explains why crews are at the future home of The Reed at Southbank are tearing up the yard and digging in the dirt. For-real construction is expected to begin by the time summer months arrive in Chicago. Lendlease will, of course, be their own general contractor, in addition to their developer duties.

The Reed at Southbank will be the second tower at Lendlease’s Southbank development. Its first, The Cooper, opened in 2018. The Reed will be a 41-story mix of apartments and condominiums. This is how Lendlease describes it:

THE REED AT SOUTHBANK

Developed and constructed by Lendlease, The Reed is a 41-story luxury residential high-rise located at 234 W. Polk Street, as the next phase of its Southbank neighborhood development in Chicagos South Loop. The new building, which will offer 216 luxury condominiums on its upper floors and 224 rental apartments located on floors 9 through 22, marks the second residential tower in Southbank, a 7-acre master plan centered around 2 acres of public green space, known as Southbank Park, along the South Branch of the Chicago River.

The Reed boasts two well-appointed amenity suites for residents to enjoy, including a 12,000-square-foot outdoor amenity deck on the eighth floor overlooking Southbank Park. Residents will share access to an indoor amenity space on the eighth floor and owners will have exclusive use of an additional amenity space on the second floor, which is at grade with Southbank Park. The intentional placement of the second-floor amenities and use of full-height windows is intended to establish continuity between the park and tower, according to project architect Perkins+Will, which also designed The Cooper and the broader Southbank master plan.

Condo layouts include one, two- and three-bedroom plans priced from the $390,000s and ranging in size from 630 to 1,670 square feet. Occupying floors 23 to 41 of the tower, The Reeds condominiums celebrate the buildings idyllic location with floor-to-ceiling windows that showcase stunning views of the skyline, Lake Michigan and Chicago River, as well as Southbank Park, which borders the northern side of the building. The towers interiors pay homage to the surrounding neighborhood with an industrial-chic aesthetic that is realized through concrete ceilings and metal finishing throughout residences.

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Glass is in session at 300 North Michigan

300 North Michigan, May 5, 2021

The rumors are true; there’s a fresh, shiny row of glass on 300 North Michigan in The Loop. Plus a little bit installed out back along MacChesney Court. Chalk up another Milestone Achieved for Sterling Bay, Magellan Development, bKL Architecture, and Linn-Mathes.



CTA and Metra rides, Zipcars, Divvy bikes, camera lenses, and solid walking shoes add up. You can help offset expenses with a greatly-appreciated donation to Building Up Chicago.

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Checking up on 300 North Michigan

300 North Michigan

A quick spin around 300 North Michigan as construction continues on the joint development effort from Sterling Bay and Magellan Development Group. Hotel rooms and apartments smack dab in the middle of the Cultural Mile and Magnificent Mile? Yes, please.

Below you’ll find photographic proof of progress. (The dude on the corner with the tape measure though? No, thanks. You’re job is safe from me.)

Darn Near Done: Old Town Park Phase III

All that remains of Atrium Village stands in front of Old Town Park Phases I, II, and III.

Exterior work is nearing completion at the final phase of the Old Town Park re-development in Chicago’s Near North neighborhood.

Old Town Park Phase III, at 228 West Hill Street got its full-build permit on New Years Eve 2019. That permit authorized construction of a 41-story, 456-unit apartment tower.

Old Town Park Phase II, the 39-dtory, 425-unit tower at 202 West Hill Street, got its first permit in December 2017.

The baby of the group, Phase I, got its first permit in February 2016. It has 405 apartments across 32 stories.

That puts developer and general contractor Onni Group in construction mode here just over five years. They also lit up all three tower cranes over the course of this development, so kudos for that, Onni! You’ll always hold a special place in the B.U.C. heart for that alone.

Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture is the design architect on Old Town Park.