Stuff That’s Done: NEMA Chicago

NEMA Chicago started out as One Grant Park. I liked that name. It didn’t give you the address, but you still knew right where it must be. You know, that really really tall one at the south end of the park. Alas, things and names change.

Thursday, James McHugh Construction sent out the above tweet, announcing they’ve done all they can do at NEMA, more than three years after taking control of the empty lot at Indiana and Michigan Avenues, and Roosevelt Road.

There are 800 apartments in this brand new 76-story skyscraper, and if the views of Chicago aren’t enough for you, it also has about a kajillion square feet of amenity space. It’s a marvelous design by Rafael Viñoly Architects. Crescent Heights is the developer. NEMA Chicago opened to residents in July 2019.

McHugh Construction Instagrams NEMA Chicago’s 50th

There was another Golden Anniversary of sorts to celebrate last week, as McHugh Construction posted the above photo to their Instagram page announcing the start of Floor #50 at NEMA Chicago. The South Loop tower by Rafael Viñoly Architects, which started life as 1200 South Indiana, became One Grant Park, and has now settled in as a member of Crescent Heights’ NEMA franchise, will eventually grow to 76 stories.

One Grant Park gets a new name (NEMA Chicago) and new glass (finally!)

NEMA Chicago glass

NEMA Chicago grows in the South Loop, despite being obscured by the Canal Street Railroad Bridge.

One Grant Park was a fine name for the new tower at 1200 South Indiana Avenue in the South Loop. It paid homage to the park whose south end the tower would anchor. Alas, the moniker wasn’t meant to last, and now One Grant Park has a new name: NEMA Chicago. This is according to the website of developer Crescent Heights. And if it’s on their website, it has to be real.

Something else One Grant Park just–oops…NEMA Chicago–just picked up, and this took longer than expected: cladding. Curtain wall. Windows. Glass. Glorious glass. Some up high, some down low. But it’s there, at last.

One Grant Park continues to spring upwards as April arrives

One Grant Park April 2018

One Grant Park rises above the trees at the south end of–you guessed it–Grant Park.

You know lots about One Grant Park by now, right? 76 stories, 792 apartments, and not even the biggest tower McHugh Construction is working on in Chicago right now. No respect, I’m tellin’ ya.

Let’s just cut right to some progress photos then.

This time around, it’s a sunny South Loop

Last week, we posted several updates on construction progress in the South Loop. Sadly for us and our cameras, we picked a foggy, miserable day to be out and about. Well, Tuesday was no such day. And with bright sunshine beaming all morning and afternoon, we headed back down to the South Loop for brighter, happier photos of the goings-on.

Ancora

The Paragon Chicago

Essex on the Park

One Grant Park

 

Hilton Homewood Suites/Hilton Garden Inn

One Grant Park continues its climb into the South Loop heights

One Grant Park February 2018

One Grant Park pushes upward into Thursday’s fog.

That headline isn’t meant to be a play on developer Crescent Heights’ name; it is only to say that One Grant Park is going to be really tall.

We’re still awaiting the arrival of the first pieces of curtain wall to the exterior of the Rafael Viñoly Architects creation at 1200 South Indiana, McHugh Construction keeps stacking floors on top of each other, on their way to 76 levels in total. We’ve captured photographic evidence, naturally.

 

A cold-night South Loop update

South Loop Chicago

Chicago’s magnificent skyline, viewed from the South Loop.

The good thing about the approach of winter is that you don’t have to wait until 9:30 to get night shots of construction. The bad thing, of course, is it’s dang cold out there.

We took a quick walk through the neighborhood on a brisk evening to catch up on the South Loop after dark. This is what my iPhone saw:

One Grant Park

One Grant Park is the best of the South Loop after dark crowd.

Hilton Homewood Suites/Garden Inn

 

Essex on the Park

1326 South Michigan

1407 On Michigan

There isn’t much light on this one. That must mean it’s almost done.

Eleven40

Eleven40 has also gone dark

 

 

And then there were two. Twice.

One tower crane is cool. Two is spectacular. There might be sound functional reasons to employ two tower cranes on a job site, but it’s usually done for our entertainment. And two jobs sites came through for us last week.

The Lincoln Common

The two tower cranes of The Lincoln Common.

W.E. O’Neil added a second crane up at The Lincoln Common. It.s two 20-story towers each require a crane of its own. And McHugh Construction added a second crane at One Grant Park. It’s primary function will be to construct the 16-story parking deck, while the first crane continues with the residential portion of the 76-story apartment tower.

One Grant Park

A luffing crane has joined the fun at One Grant Park.

Chicago now has five construction projects with two tower cranes, joining the Simpson Querrey Biomedical Research Center, One Bennett Park, and Vista Tower.

Here comes Tower Crane #2 at One Grant Park

One Grant Park tower crane #2

One Grant park’s original tower crane stands proudly over its latest project: Tower Crane #2.

As One Grant Park continues to grow, we saw growth of another kind on Tuesday: Tower Crane #2 has sprouted up from the stub planted on the site last week.

When I arrived late in the afternoon, the crane’s tower had grown, but the crawler crane on the lot last week planting the stub was nowhere to be found. That tells me Tower Crane #1 is putting Crane #2 together. Doesn’t that kind of teamwork just melt your heart. Crane #1 will continue working on the residential of the tower (that being the 792 apartments we all want to see the views from) and Crane #2 will work on the parking deck that extends up through the 16th floor.

As for the rest of work at One Grant Park that doesn’t involve assembling tower cranes, McHugh Construction crews look like they’ve reached the 15th floor, by my count. Just 61 stories to go to reach 76. We’ll have plenty of progress to watch for over the coming fall and winter months.

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for: More photos than you’ll ever need of a tower crane that isn’t even finished yet… plus the rest of progress on One Grant Park.