Twitter introduces Chicago’s two newest tower cranes

Chicago started 2018 with 30 tower cranes in the air. Now, that number of 2018 cranes has risen to 32.

Recent tweets from Twitter users @WestLoopTom and @TheBigGreenW introduced me to the two latest cranes, at Hayden West Loop and Wolf Point East, respectively. For Walsh Construction, WPE marks their second currently operating crane in Chicago, along with 1326 South Michigan. Also celebrating their second crane is Macon Construction over at Hayden.

You can see the tweeted photos of the pretty yellow Liebherr cranes below:

Demolition equipment drives thru Chicago’s Rock and Roll McDonald’s

Rock and Roll McDonald's demolition

Bye bye to the old memorabilia pavilion at the Rock and Roll McDonald’s. The restaurant itself will be next to go. Except for the basement. They’re saving the basement.

Tuesday, the City of Chicago issued a demolition permit for one of Chicago’s most beloved tourist attraction, the Rock and Roll McDonald’s at 600 North Clark Street in River North. This shouldn’t have come as a surprise to anyone, as the Chicago Tribune broke the news two weeks ago that changes were coming to the restaurant. But Twitter didn’t take kindly to the news. At least, not after the first wave of good riddances had passed. Those happy to see the building bite the dust were soon out-voted by many who hold fond memories of being overcharged to eat alongside statues of The Beatles and other rock and roll memorabilia.

Jay Koziarz at Curbed Chicago was on the scene bright and early, and like many of us, was a little surprised to see crews wasting no time tearing into the small pavilion to the west of the main restaurant.

Alas, some Twitter users were excited about the news, thinking the full-block lot was destined for redevelopment. But that’s not the case. Some of the McDonald’s will stay put, and the whole joint will be renovated. So no, don’t expect any shiny new towers to rise up on the block. Yet.

Rock and Roll McDonald's demolition

You’re next, McDonald’s dining room with the visor.

Rock and Roll McDonald's demolition

Photo by Jay Koziarz at Curbed Chicago mid-demolition.

Rock and Roll McDonald's demolition

John, Paul, George, and RinGONE

Rock and Roll McDonald's demolition

The demolition permit.

 

Getting to know Chicago Tower Crane #60

Renelle on the River

McHugh Construction’s tower crane at Renelle on the River, from East Upper Wacker Drive.

We’d only gone by the new tower crane at Renelle on the River once since McHugh Construction erected it back in the second week of November. It famously became Chicago’s 60th tower crane in the air for this calendar year. The Mayor was there. It was a big deal. It was also dark, so I didn’t get a great look at it

Of course, Tuesday was kind of a dud as far as weather goes, but that didn’t stop us from getting a few more angles on the shiny yellow Liebherr 200 HC model. Aside from standing in the plaza just outside Trump Tower, where you can look straight up at the beast, we suggest East Wacker Drive and the Michigan Avenue Bridge as the best crane-gawking spots.

The end draweth near for the beginning of Three Sixty West

Three Sixty West 360 West Erie

360 West Erie has to go, making room for Three Sixty West. It’s the new math.

A demolition permit was issued Tuesday for the humble 2-story building at 360 West Erie in River North. Yeah, that rooftop deck is cool, but it has to go. If the address sounds familiar to you, it may be from the buzz going ’round about Three Sixty West, the new condo tower coming to the block from Belgravia Group (think Renelle on the River). Designed by GREC Architects, Three Sixty West will feature 38 condominiums in an 12-story building.

Quality Excavation will do the ripping apart of the old building; when construction time begins, Maris Construction (they’re putting the finishing touches on Belgravia’s CA Washington development) will be on the build.

12 stories? Yep, Maris should land on the tower crane count soon.

As Wolf Point East digs out from Chicago River flooding, a tower crane permit arrives

Wolf Point East

One big pile of slop, waiting to be heaved into a truck and hauled away from Wolf Point East.

Just before this story went to the presses, a permit came through for a tower crane at Wolf Point East. A Liebherr 420 EC-H 16 to be precise. A SHINY YELLOW TOWER CRANE, to be technical.

Wolf Point east tower crane permit

Wolf Point East got a tower crane permit on Monday.

When I posted an update on foundation work at Wolf Point East at the beginning of November, there was one factor involved I hadn’t been aware of: flooding.

We were away in Australia (you may have noticed some posts from that trip) when torrential rains caused flooding along the Chicago River in October, and the construction pit at Wolf Point East took the brunt of it, filling with water completely. (You can scroll down this photo gallery from Curbed for a look at the deluge) That explains the mud that remains on site. I was back there over the weekend, and noticed just how sloppy things were, but that isn’t stopping work from continuing. You can see how much deeper work has gone, as Walsh Construction oversees progress on the six subterranean levels of the 60-story tower.

Renelle on the River erects Chicago’s 60th tower crane of 2017

Renelle on the River tower crane

Chicago’s 60th tower crane of 2017 is up and lifting at Renelle on the River.

The Big 6-0 is on the board, as Chicago’s 60th tower crane takes to the skies at Renelle on the River, at 403 North Wabash in River North. If you want to count backwards, Home2 Suites, also in River North at 110 West Huron, was #59. The Van Buren, at 808 West Van Buren in the West Loop, came in at #58 last month. And 210 North Carpenter, another West Loop project, was Chicago’s 57th crane of the year when it went up.

*60 cranes. That’s a big year for tower cranes. And with the stub Hayden West Loop planted in the ground at 1109 West Washington, #61 will be added to the count very soon. Two other cranes have permits: 3833 North Broadway, where we expect a stub to be planted around Thanksgiving; and The Bentham, at 146 West Erie, which doesn’t have a construction permit yet.

*I am not counting the derrick crane at Simpson Querrey.

Renelle on the River plants a tower crane on North Wabash

Renelle on the River tower crane stub

A tower crane stub has been planted at Renelle on the River.

One of the city’s tightest construction spaces has planted a shiny yellow tower crane stub. Renelle on the River is the 18-story, bKL Architecture-designed condo tower Belgravia Group is sliding atop the underground parking garage at 403 North Wabash in River North. And a walk-by yesterday reveals McHugh Construction working around the new crane.

Renelle on the River tower crane stub

Rendering of Renelle on the River from bKL Architecture.

Renelle on the River is a curious project. Not only is it the aforementioned tight squeeze where a small plaza once stood, but it will also be angled in such a way as to give all residents a view of the Chicago River. And then there’s the foundation. No caissons were drilled for this one (the building permit went straight to full-build, with no foundation permit), leaving one to assume the existing parking structure was built to support much more weight than a few cars. And that tower crane’s foundation? It appears to be suspended in mid-air, even while being rooted in a huge block of concrete. It’s a mesmerizing set-up, to be sure.

Renelle on the River will bring 50 three- and four-bedroom condominiums to the neighborhood. There’s a sales office right next to the site, if you want to stop in and check them out. We highly suggest taking their virtual tour.