110 North Wacker (Bank of America Tower to some of you) is open to the public this weekend for Open House Chicago 2021. The 55th floor is a continuous, wide-open space, and a great vantage point to see Chicago. If you’re like me, and think the Sears Tower is just a tad too high for your modest camera-lens collection, this is the ticket.
I got a good view of our five remaining tower cranes from up here.
And an honorable mention for 300 North Michigan, which is being taken down.
Yes, there are a few on the way. These have tower crane permits:
410 South Wabash is done with foundation work. 1000M will hopefully be back in business soon. 164 North Peoria is still in caisson mode. ALLY at Lincoln Yards hasn’t broken ground quite yet, but site work has started, at it got a foundation permit last week. 1306 East 61st Street – The University of Chicago doesn’t have any other permits yet. 178 West Randolph and 320 South Clinton? I’m not holding my breath.
No permit, but . . .
UIC had a tower crane at the UI Health Outpatient Surgery Center & Specialty Clinics crane is being dismantled this week. UIC may need a crane at 700 West Taylor for its Computer Design Research and Learning Center. But there won’t be a city permit for it, should there be one, because this is being built under the State of Illinois’ authority. 513 South Damen just got a foundation permit for 21 stories.
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.
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.)
“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’sSouthbank 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.
Metra and CTA rides, Zipcars, Divvy Bikes, camera lenses, and comfortable walking shoes add up. You can help offset expenses by making a greatly-appreciated donation to Building Up Chicago.