That really cool tower crane at 151 North Franklin is coming down

CNA Center tower crane

Eye-to-eye as the tower crane comes down at 151 North Franklin.

An email from Alderman Reilly’s office confirmed what we already knew; the tower crane at 151 North Franklin is coming down this weekend. Randolph Street between Lake and Franklin is closed as crews from Central Contractor Services use the roadway to load up red tower crane parts and haul them off to their next assignment.

Initial confusion over what kind of crane would be utilized at 151 North Franklin soon turned into joy, as Lendlease engineered a spectacular steel frame over the Randolph Street sidewalk, in effect floating the tower crane above pedestrians’ heads.  A luffer rather than a fighter, it made the Best Of 2016 list, served its purpose, and now moves on. Chances are good we see that same crane pop up downtown soon, on another site.

The topped-out 151 North Franklin drops the tower crane

CNA Center

Those skies on Saturday! You almost don’t notice the tower crane has sunk below the top of 151 North Franklin.

You knew 151 North Franklin had topped out; The John Buck Company told us when they tweeted from the ceremony a month ago. And now comes the next sign that the future CNA Center is getting closer to completion: the tower crane started coming down this past weekend.

Luckily, a tower crane permit was issued yesterday for Eight Eleven Uptown, so things will even out soon. We’ve also got cranes on the way for One Grant Park (planted), 1101 South Wabash, and One South Halsted.

The John Buck Company’s 151 North Franklin tops out

And there it goes. Thanks to The John Buck Company for sharing news that 151 North Franklin topped out, and for capturing the moment the final beam rose skyward in photos. I stopped by Randolph and Franklin later in the afternoon to find Lendlease celebrating the event by hanging more glass.

You can see more photos from TJBC’s on its Facebook page here.

Construction Progress: 151 North Franklin glazes a trail in The Loop

CNA Center

Just a couple guys, hanging out, and in, and over, 151 North Franklin.

151 North Franklin, the future CNA Center in The Loop, keeps getting taller and shinier. Go by at any time of day, and you’ll see crews on a couple sides of the building hanging glass panels. It’s the kind of work that’s fun to watch from down here, until you see someone lean out over the edge to watch what’s happening below them, and you need to move on before you lose your lunch.

Here, have a bunch of progress photos, all taken without having to dangle precariously from, over, or above anything.

If you’re clad and you know it… you might be 151 North Franklin

There’s an embarrassment of riches of new glass around Chicago these days. The latest to show up for the party? 151 North Franklin. But you have to look carefully. There are a few panels visible from the corner of Franklin and Randolph, and then a couple rows along Couch Place (aka the alley between Randolph and Lake.)

Have a look:

Construction Update: 151 North Franklin

151 North Franklin

The tower crane that isn’t a tower crane at 151 North Franklin still soars high above Randolph Street.

I missed the memo that said 151 North Franklin would be growing like a weed in spring, despite Chicago heading into winter. On the lot that only yesterday still seemed to anchor that worn-out old Walgreen’s store, the future CNA Center already appears to be about 18 stories into the sky. You can credit Lendlease for that miracle growth, for even in Thursday’s inhuman temperatures, there was still a construction crew on site. That’s not just a core shooting up through the center of The John Buck Company’s 820,000-square-foot office tower, that’s hard-core.

Here are a few shots on 151 North Franklin, which has outgrown all the adjacent parking garages, and their prime vantage points.


Construction Progress: 151 North Franklin

151 North Franklin

Kudos to Lendlease; they #FlyTheW while they #FlyTheIron.

The CNA Center, 151 North Franklin Street in the Loop. A 35-story office tower with 820,000 rentable square feet.

Enough words. More pictures.



151 North Franklin gets crankin’

CNA Center

The core of the CNA Center has reached the top of the 7-story garage next door. So I’m gonna say it’s about 7 stories high right now.

Admittedly, I became so infatuated with that funky tower crane at the new CNA Center, at 151 North Franklin Street in The Loop, that I forgot to notice how much of the core had risen from the earth. Then, all of a sudden, there it was, right in front of me.

General contractor Lendlease looks to be having a wonderful time pouring concrete and hammering lumber and such. I went ahead and took some pictures, figuring you wouldn’t mind seeing them…

That sure *looks* like a real tower crane at 151 North Franklin

151 North Franklin tower crane

So it’s not rooted into the ground. Big deal. This one may be even better, because of that glorious steel truss anchoring it above street level.

151 North Franklin, the new CNA Center in The Loop, started putting up its tower crane this weekend. And while the permit only costs half as much as your standard tower crane permit, it’s full-price-impressive.

151 North Franklin tower crane

Standing on the southwest corner of Franklin & Randolph.

Lendlease, the general contractor for the office tower, will have the luxury of reaching across 4 different blocks if need be. Though I doubt that will be necessary. Or even encouraged. But yes, this monster stretches across the corner of Franklin and Randolph. (It’d be kinda fun to pluck cars from the corner parking lot and put them atop the the parking deck at 200 West Randolph. But that might be why I’m not allowed to operate cranes.)

WARNING: This is a lot of pictures of a tower crane. But when you see it being assembled, you can’t just walk away.

Quick Look: Steel stealing the spotlight at 151 North Franklin

151 North Franklin steel

Construction at 151 North Franklin is rising above street level, highlighted by the steel on the south side of the lot.

I’m kind of obsessed with this steel work going on right now at 151 North Franklin. It reminds me of the glorious contraption on the south end of 150 North Riverside when it first went up. Sadly, the CNA Center requires no massive red crane on a barge.