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  #1  
Old Posted Oct 4, 2014, 11:50 PM
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Cool CHICAGO | 195 N Columbus (LSE) | 650 FT | 54 FLOORS






____________________________________________

OLD PROPOSAL:

Skyscraper Inbound for Lakeshore East











Lakeshore East master plan map courtesy of Magellan Development

Quote:
The Lakeshore East neighborhood between the Loop and the lake probably isn't one of the most well-known of Chicago's many self-contained communities, but for skyscraper-watchers it's been one of the most exciting few blocks in town. Already home to Studio Gang's famous Aqua tower with another Gang tower likely to soon join it, the planned development conceived as a neighborhood of skyscrapers looks to be gaining yet another. According to bid-monitoring services and also reported by the Chicago Architecture Blog, Magellan Development and McHugh construction are taking bids for an unspecified 60-story mixed use tower "located at the southwest corner of Lakeshore East Park," a description that could only apply to Lakeshore East's infamous "Site O," the narrow strip of undeveloped dirt along Columbus between the Blue Cross Blue Shield building and Aqua tower.

Site O was once thought to be the location of the long-rumored Gang supertall tower, which now appears to be planned for the north end of Lakeshore East instead. Other rumors have flown around about the site for ages, with lots of speculation about whether it would even be possible to build something suitably tall in such a narrow space without the cooperation of the BCBS tower's owners and without disrupting the views of the hotshots who live in Aqua. The rumors began to solidify about a month ago, when we started hearing reports of ground surveying crews taking measurements of the site.

Now, with McHugh and Magellan actively shopping for subcontractors, it seems we can move the long-awaited Site O project from the "rumor" column to the "lookin' pretty good" column. Unfortunately, other than the building having 60 floors and being mixed-use, we don't have any specifics on the design or use. Hopefully Magellan will make an announcement pretty soon, as according to the request for bids they plan to start construction in May 2015.


Quote:
Building O (201 North Columbus Drive) is the newest skyscraper coming to Lakeshore East, the upscale waterside enclave that sprouts skyscrapers like zits on a sweaty teenager’s back. “Building O” is a terrible name. Going back to when Lakeshore East was originally laid out in the 1970′s, all of the future buildings were given a letter until they could later be given a name. It was a good idea, because if the Illinois Central Gulf Railroad Company has been allowed to actually name the buildings when it laid them out back in 1978, we’d have skyscrapers called The Coleco, The Lowenbrau, and the Hervé Villechaize Towers. Instead Lakeshore East ended up with sensible names like 340 on the Park, The Shoreham, and The Chandler. Oh, wait…

Building O is going to be big. It gets slotted into that gaping five-story-deep hole just south of Aqua. That space is zoned for a tower up to 900 feet tall. Before Aqua was built, its space had the same ceiling. Aqua ended up 83 stories and 870 feet tall. Building O is going to ruin an awful lot of views from the Aqua tower.

[...]
===============================
http://www.chicagoarchitecture.org/2...ge-skyscraper/
http://chicago.curbed.com/archives/2...shore-east.php

Last edited by i_am_hydrogen; Jul 12, 2017 at 7:17 PM.
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  #2  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2014, 3:06 AM
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I still can't wrap my head on how it's only going to be 60 floors if there will be 574 apartments and 684 hotel rooms.
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  #3  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2014, 3:25 AM
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Make the Tower 950-975 feet and I'm in. That is one of a few prime location's left.
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  #4  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2014, 3:54 AM
untitledreality untitledreality is offline
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Make the Tower 950-975 feet and I'm in. That is one of a few prime location's left.
Prime? Few?

You don't even have to leave the Lakeshore East complex to find three vacant sites which are many magnitudes more desirable.
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  #5  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2014, 6:08 AM
Kngkyle Kngkyle is offline
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Suppose I'll relay the information I posted on the compilation thread here..

574 apartments, 684 hotel rooms. 10,000 sq ft of retail, 4,000 of it facing LSE park. 197 parking spaces below Upper Columbus drive. Parking will be an extension of the Aqua parking structure and accessed through the Aqua entries and ramps. Podium will have "food and beverage outlets" in addition to the usual lobbies, ballroom, amenities, etc. LEED Silver. bKL is the architect.

Deadline for sub contractor bids is 10/10/14, construction start date set for May 2015.
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  #6  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2014, 11:34 PM
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Hello, exciting news.
If this building is only 60 stories, then I don't see it being taller than BCBS, especially if the counting starts from ground level instead of from Upper Columbus. Thus, Aqua shouldn't lose any views.

Will be exciting to see the renders come in.
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  #7  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 4:26 AM
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bkl doesn't excite me, hopefully I'm surprised....
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  #8  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 1:56 PM
LouisVanDerWright LouisVanDerWright is offline
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Quote:
574 apartments, 684 hotel rooms. 10,000 sq ft of retail, 4,000 of it facing LSE park. 197 parking spaces below Upper Columbus drive. Parking will be an extension of the Aqua parking structure and accessed through the Aqua entries and ramps. Podium will have "food and beverage outlets" in addition to the usual lobbies, ballroom, amenities, etc. LEED Silver. bKL is the architect.
Something about these numbers seems funny. Aqua has 747 residential units and 225 hotel rooms, yet is 80 floors. This building will have 1,250 total units (250 more than Aqua) and only be 60 floors. Aqua is about the same width as this site, but isn't as long as this site. What this indicates to me is that this building is going to be an absolute slab. How else are they going to cram 20+ units on each floor?

I'm not complaining about it, but I think it's pretty clear that this building needs to be pretty much lot line to lot line in order to accommodate that many units in only 60 floors. Absolutely loving the density though, between that and filing the last hole along Columbus, this is sure to inject some big time streetlife into the area. In terms of unit count, this will be the biggest building in LSE with 25% more units than Aqua. Will probably have a similar SF to Aqua since hotel rooms are smaller than apartments and apartments are usually smaller than condos.
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  #9  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 1:58 PM
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Originally Posted by UPChicago View Post
bkl doesn't excite me, hopefully I'm surprised....
Agreed. This is going to be another well designed but boring glass box. Like WP west, like the Coast, and 200 N Michigan ave.
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  #10  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 2:52 PM
SamInTheLoop SamInTheLoop is offline
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^^ Yep - it is going to be a wide tower for sure (or maybe I mean long, as you're using it) the eastern facade afaik may go just about to the park drive (in other words, even further east than the light blue footprint in the map goes). Western facade of the tower itself probably set back from Columbus (but even so, look how long the overall site is, if you're going all the way to the park drive - it's very long). So yes, massive slab - I love it.

Another way to think about how large (not necessarily tall - just in terms of sq ft) this tower could be - it has more residential units than Coast - maybe 50 more??, and oh, yeah, then throw in almost 700 hotel rooms split among two flags (and all the associated common area/amenity space those two flags may need! This is the type of density we need much more of.

Totally agree as well with your previous assessment of Magellan needing to go back to the city for additional density in LSE at some point in the future. I've realized this since at least Aqua, if not before. Combination of no office towers, plus building somewhat taller/denser than originally envisioned does mean that they will run out of entitlements before they put up some of the last towers along LSD.....strategically better for them to wait until they need them to build on those parcels (what is the city going to do, insist that these remain prairie?, of course a deal will be worked out....


^ To me, boring seems harsh for bKL's work, I suppose if your mindset is that you are looking for avant garde or something as a baseline for new towers, than perhaps I understand your assessment, but that's not my starting point in taking in new tower designs.......
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Last edited by SamInTheLoop; Oct 6, 2014 at 4:35 PM.
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  #11  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 3:36 PM
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Workers at BCBS offices will have great views into units of whoever lives at site O. 8)
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  #12  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 4:50 PM
LouisVanDerWright LouisVanDerWright is offline
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I think bKL's work is pretty nice actually, I certainly wouldn't call GEM's boring. Sure Coast is very minimalist, but the detailing is fantastic. Wolf Point isn't even built yet, but the massive colonnade they are building along the river right now is looking like it will be anything but boring.


Sam, I like your assessment, but how about this comparison: The apartment tower going up at Block 37 has 690 units in 34 story tower which is also almost exactly the same footprint of this site and also will have an average of slightly over 20 units per floor. This tower will basically equal B37 X 2.

I'm willing to bet this tower will break the Low-end-burg model of ultra low ceiling heights to some degree given the location. I can't see them keeping heights low with so few corner units. They need to maximize light to the interior if it's going to be a massive slab or they are going to have a bunch of pretty undesirable units on their hands. I imagine this will be around 700' from the Park level and like 650' from upper Columbus resulting in interior ceiling heights around 9' instead of the 8.5' heights in Aqua and earlier towers.

Or maybe they've found a way to create more angles in the design and thereby open up the units to more light. Either way looking forward to seeing the design solution they've come up with for this unique site. We could end up with something with the massing of a slightly shorter BCBS that has been sliced in half the long ways. Pretty awesome.
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  #13  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 6:15 PM
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8'6" ceiling heights. The design is basically a slab that fills the lot, but set back 120' from Columbus.

The facade has kind of a two-face design that makes it look like Seagram Building and Citicorp Center are spooning... long continuous balconies like Coast are prominent on certain portions.
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Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 6:30 PM
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You can see the work they just started doing to the stairs on the SE corner of Aqua's property. Pretty sure they're adding an elevator.
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  #15  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 6:53 PM
SamInTheLoop SamInTheLoop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
8'6" ceiling heights. The design is basically a slab that fills the lot, but set back 120' from Columbus.

The facade has kind of a two-face design that makes it look like Seagram Building and Citicorp Center are spooning... long continuous balconies like Coast are prominent on certain portions.


You had me at Seagram.


But seriously, what is Magellan's deal with going with substandard/sub-market ceiling heights still? This isn't 1998 anymore. (news flash - higher ceilings actually make a large difference in the perception of how spacious an apartment is - and the market - everyone except for Magellan - has picked up on that in a big way over the last decade-plus). Sure, you cheap out and save on construction costs upfront, but Magellan being a longer-term player/operator as well surely must realize the inherant risk here with going lower than market (and making apartments 'feel' more cramped, thus missing out on a definite degree of NOI upside).........or, do they just feel that their location is so good here - which objectively it is - it is quite fantastic - that they can 'afford' this substandard/market aspect??
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Old Posted Oct 6, 2014, 7:44 PM
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they will just charge high rents anyway, setting the standard that even crappy apartments are super expensive.
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  #17  
Old Posted Oct 7, 2014, 2:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UPChicago View Post
bkl doesn't excite me, hopefully I'm surprised....
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Originally Posted by rlw777 View Post
Agreed. This is going to be another well designed but boring glass box. Like WP west, like the Coast, and 200 N Michigan ave.
Boxes are ubiquitous in Chicago because they make sense. This isn't New York where developers can afford novel studies in form for the sole purpose of differentiating their product; and (thank God) this also (mostly) isn't Miami or Toronto where superficial flourishes are offered up as the poor man's Architecture with a capital A instead. If you're going to deviate from the box in this city, you better have a damned good reason for doing so. Hell, part of the genius of Aqua is that it embraces the box as a starting point. (And I'd argue that the majority of people who dislike Aqua fail to appreciate this fact.)

IMO, looking at what's going up in other cities, I firmly believe that bKL are among the best designers of tall buildings in the country. They understand materials; the understand details; they understand subtlety and restraint. They're one of only a few firms to successfully translate the Miesian aesthetic into the 21st Century. And considering how many pretenders to his throne have abased the glass box since its advent, I think they're playing a very valuable role in doing so.
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Old Posted Oct 7, 2014, 2:58 AM
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They've also been very prolific in town lately. For a young company they've been producing a huge amount of prominent-ish buildings in a short amount of time. I'm hopeful to see what they've got for this one.
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Old Posted Oct 7, 2014, 3:35 AM
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Originally Posted by SamInTheLoop View Post
But seriously, what is Magellan's deal with going with substandard/sub-market ceiling heights still? This isn't 1998 anymore. (news flash - higher ceilings actually make a large difference in the perception of how spacious an apartment is - and the market - everyone except for Magellan - has picked up on that in a big way over the last decade-plus). Sure, you cheap out and save on construction costs upfront, but Magellan being a longer-term player/operator as well surely must realize the inherant risk here with going lower than market (and making apartments 'feel' more cramped, thus missing out on a definite degree of NOI upside).........or, do they just feel that their location is so good here - which objectively it is - it is quite fantastic - that they can 'afford' this substandard/market aspect??
Doesn't Aqua have soul-crushingly low ceilings as well?
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  #20  
Old Posted Oct 7, 2014, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Ch.G, Ch.G View Post
Boxes are ubiquitous in Chicago because they make sense. This isn't New York where developers can afford novel studies in form for the sole purpose of differentiating their product; and (thank God) this also (mostly) isn't Miami or Toronto where superficial flourishes are offered up as the poor man's Architecture with a capital A instead. If you're going to deviate from the box in this city, you better have a damned good reason for doing so. Hell, part of the genius of Aqua is that it embraces the box as a starting point. (And I'd argue that the majority of people who dislike Aqua fail to appreciate this fact.)

IMO, looking at what's going up in other cities, I firmly believe that bKL are among the best designers of tall buildings in the country. They understand materials; the understand details; they understand subtlety and restraint. They're one of only a few firms to successfully translate the Miesian aesthetic into the 21st Century. And considering how many pretenders to his throne have abased the glass box since its advent, I think they're playing a very valuable role in doing so.
feeling this post and completely agree
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