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  #1  
Old Posted May 6, 2007, 7:14 AM
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CHAMPAIGN, IL | 309 Green St. | 256 FT / 90 M | HEIGHT | 24 FLOORS

http://www.news-gazette.com/news/loc...ings_on_campus

C-U getting new king of buildings on campus
By Mike Monson

Wednesday, May 2, 2007 2:21 PM CDT

City officials are calling it "the whopper."

Construction is expected to begin this month on a 24-story Campustown apartment building that will become the tallest building in Champaign-Urbana once it is finished in 16 months.

The building will be constructed at 309 E. Green St., on a 132-by-132 foot site that was recently home to a Burger King restaurant.

Developers Tom Gillespie of Urbana, Brian Neiswender of Champaign and Tom Scott and Mark Lifshin, both of Chicago, are the principals behind the project. Their company, Campus Acquisitions LLC of Champaign, is developing the project.

Roland Realty, of which Gillespie is president, will manage the building after in opens in mid-2008.

The building will have 110 apartments, most of them four-bedroom units and all of them having a terrace. The first floor will be retail/commercial, and the next six floors will be for parking, with 219 spaces.

"Why so tall?" said Gillespie. "The cost of the land and the floor-area ratio (a city zoning standard) allows us to put that many units on that much land. It's both opportunity and necessity."

On the eighth floor, on top of the parking podium, will be a fitness center, an outdoor swimming pool and open air hot tub.

The building, unnamed at this point, is on the same block as the current tallest building in town, The Tower at Third, which has 21 stories and stands at 205 feet. It was built in the 1970s.

Gillespie said the apartments will be located in two linked towers and will have "a very Chicago urban persona," with plenty of windows and aluminum. He said the apartments will be rented as a unit, not by the bedroom, and will be most attractive to undergraduate students.

"They'll have a Chicago loft style feel," he said. "They'll have granite countertops, hardwood floors, washers and dryers, and higher end appliances."

The units will be completely furnished and will include flat-screen televisions and Internet service.

"They are going to be high-end units," Gillespie said. "It's an overused term, but it's applicable here."

The 270,000-square-foot apartment building will be built up to the property line. The adjacent Campus Corner Mall at Fourth and Green streets will remain in place and will not be a part of the project.

Broeren Russo Companies of Champaign will be the contractor on the project, which will use concrete construction.

The building's architecture "is more typical of what you would see in Chicago or an urban style architecture," said John Russo, executive vice president of Broeren Russo Companies.

Russo said constructing the high-rise will require that one lane of Green Street be closed near the project for about a year. He said the lane closure won't take place for a few months.

Construction of caisson foundation piers could begin today, he said.

Gillespie declined to say how much the project will cost, but the estimated cost is listed at $21 million on the building permit application.

Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture of Chicago is the architect.

The city of Champaign has already awarded a footing and foundation permit for the project and is reviewing a building permit application submitted by the developer on April 18. No zoning change is required for the project, which is located in a Central Business District zoning district, said Bruce Knight, Champaign's planning director.

"We've looked at some of the preliminary drawings," said Knight. "It certainly represents a significant reinvestment in Campustown and that's positive."

Knight said the city is likely, in coming months, to evaluate the capacity of the Campustown area to handle such high-rise buildings and their impact on "the urban form." That will probably be done through an update of the Campustown Action Plan, which is several years old, he said.

"I'm not being critical of this particular building," Knight said. "I don't know that anybody imagined that buildings of this size would become commonplace down there."

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  #2  
Old Posted May 6, 2007, 7:26 AM
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Great news for Champaign. The podium needs some work but other then that looks good. There are also plans for a 20+ building closer to downtown. Fairly soon Champaign will have a decent skyline. The city has an advantage having all the high-rise expertise of Chicago, including architects and construction workers just a few hours away.
     
     
  #3  
Old Posted May 6, 2007, 2:51 PM
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wow, did a triple-take on this thread's title: champaign?

as a proud illinois alum, i will always love that town, and it will be pretty interesting to see this tower go up near the tower they mentioned on third st. i am trying to picture where this will be, as i lived on fourth and daniel for a year, just north of green, and there was a burger king just west (i think)) of fourth and green, but i don't think that jives with the address they're listing.

in any event, thanks for starting this thread.
     
     
  #4  
Old Posted May 6, 2007, 4:21 PM
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^ Judging by its address, I think this will be directly north of The Tower on Third, since that building's address is 302 East John Street.

Where does the 256' height data come from? And anyone have information on the other 20-story proposal for Champaign?
     
     
  #5  
Old Posted May 6, 2007, 5:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan in Chicago View Post
^ Judging by its address, I think this will be directly north of The Tower on Third, since that building's address is 302 East John Street.

Where does the 256' height data come from? And anyone have information on the other 20-story proposal for Champaign?
sentence deleted, misunderstood dan's post.

also, i second the request of anyone to post more info on the second 20+-story tower.

cheers.

Last edited by j korzeniowski; May 6, 2007 at 5:07 PM. Reason: misread previous post
     
     
  #6  
Old Posted May 6, 2007, 5:21 PM
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I believe it will be on the Burger King site. Hence, calling it "the whopper".
     
     
  #7  
Old Posted May 7, 2007, 4:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Marcu View Post
I believe it will be on the Burger King site. Hence, calling it "the whopper".
ahhh ... i see what they did there ...
     
     
  #8  
Old Posted May 7, 2007, 5:48 PM
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Totally awesome, the boom spreads south. I lived there for the wrong 4 years! (I also lived in Champaign right around this area, except I almostalways lived in the dumpy rotting student apartment complexes...Shitty construction but great high-density. I did have the good fortune of living on the 13th floor my first year in the dorms). That BK was such an eyesore, I'm glad its gone.

Campustown has very good density and streetlife on account of it being a college town. The high density also means parking is impossible, which further encourages pedestrian and transit activity. Further, the impossible parking situation makes it that much less attractive to live far away off campus, thus boosting demand for housing near campus, i.e. high density.

Green St. is a great ped-friendly commercial stretch, with lots of bars, restaurants, cafes, etc. Hopefully this is the start of even more ambitious high-density construction along the major thoroughfares like Green St. and Springfield Ave.
     
     
  #9  
Old Posted May 8, 2007, 12:51 AM
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oh shit, first that project in evanston, now this?

is Illinois on the rise?




lets get a better rendering though, like one where we can see it in place in the city. I need to make a not-so-mental picture.
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Last edited by NYC2ATX; May 8, 2007 at 1:03 AM.
     
     
  #10  
Old Posted May 8, 2007, 3:32 AM
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thats my school in the fall
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  #11  
Old Posted May 8, 2007, 3:40 AM
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Originally Posted by StatenIslander237 View Post
oh shit, first that project in evanston, now this?

is Illinois on the rise?




lets get a better rendering though, like one where we can see it in place in the city. I need to make a not-so-mental picture.
There's not much of a skyline to speak of.... there's just sort of a random smattering of buildings in the 8 to 20 story range scattered around campus (I think only 4 buildings with 12 stories or more).

This is also interesting because its basically in a corn-town about 2 hours south of Chicago, though its worth pointing out how great the integration is; Champaign-Urbana has an awesome bus transit system with good service hours and typical headways around 15 minutes, with most routes hubbing at the Amtrak/Greyhound terminal. Very easy to go between and around Chicago and Champaign without a car.
     
     
  #12  
Old Posted May 8, 2007, 4:04 AM
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Oh I miss Champaign. I was there from '94 to '98, and it's still home.
There was always something being built, but never anything tall. This will definitely be impressive on campus. Because of the pancake flat farmland, you can see University Inn (tower on third), Bromley hall and a few others from about 10 miles out on 57.

I worry about the quality a bit. Most of the new student apartment construction was expensive as hell while being downright shoddy and having bedrooms the size of a postage stamp.
But this isn't a 3 story apartment block, I'm sure things will be fine.

I have a sister-in-law who lives in Champaign. I'll take pictures when we go down to visit.
     
     
  #13  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 12:57 AM
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Imagine my surprise to see a highrise proposal for Champaign. I also went to the University of Illinois (Civil Engineering major). It's been about three years since I've visited the campus. With an improving football team (hopefully) and plans for a new highrise, I'll have to get back down there. Plus, I’d like to check out the Institute for Genomic Biology building (completed Nov 06) and Memorial Stadium which is being renovated.
     
     
  #14  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 3:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SolarWind View Post
Imagine my surprise to see a highrise proposal for Champaign. I also went to the University of Illinois (Civil Engineering major). It's been about three years since I've visited the campus. With an improving football team (hopefully) and plans for a new highrise, I'll have to get back down there. Plus, I’d like to check out the Institute for Genomic Biology building (completed Nov 06) and Memorial Stadium which is being renovated.
oooohh an Institute for Genomic Biology Building? sounds intriguing.

anybody have a picture of that one?
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  #15  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 3:29 AM
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Good job for UofI!
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  #16  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 3:33 PM
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Holy crap

-

Last edited by johnandahalf; Mar 25, 2008 at 11:09 PM. Reason: -
     
     
  #17  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 6:12 PM
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Originally Posted by johnandahalf View Post
However, I was shocked to read that most units will be 4-bedroom units. Really??? You can't find a 2-bedroom highrise condo unit in Atlanta for less than six figures, and 4-bedroom units virtually don't exist (unless you buy more than one unit and combine them). Even Trump's new Atlanta tower won't have any 4-bedroom units, and his smaller units will start at about $500k

Since grad students don't typically need that many bedrooms for themselves, the developers must be assuming they all want roommates. Personally, at that age, I was trying to shed the roommate situation in favor of being more independent. Does anyone know why each unit is being designed for such high occupancy? Could it be a typo?

ô¿ô
Most likely not a typo. I just graduated a couple years ago and the 4 bedroom deal seems very normal around campustown apartments. I would not be surprised if they got $2400/month from each apartment. Parking would most likely cost $600-$800/year.
     
     
  #18  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 7:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan in Chicago View Post
^ Judging by its address, I think this will be directly north of The Tower on Third, since that building's address is 302 East John Street.

Where does the 256' height data come from? And anyone have information on the other 20-story proposal for Champaign?
I've been visiting this site for a while to follow Chicago and Las Vegas developments, and finally got nagged into registering just in time for a thread I can actually contribute to.

AFAIK the other ~20 story project is being built on the site of the old Burnham Hospital at Springfield between 3rd and 4th Street. Foundation work started a month or two ago and there's a construction crane on site that's about the right height for a 200 foot building.

This one will also be residential with some retail. The developer has a web site with no content to speak of at http://burnham310.com/.
     
     
  #19  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 7:42 PM
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Originally Posted by jasongbarnes View Post
Most likely not a typo. I just graduated a couple years ago and the 4 bedroom deal seems very normal around campustown apartments. I would not be surprised if they got $2400/month from each apartment. Parking would most likely cost $600-$800/year.
Stop following me to every online forum I frequent!

send me a PM/IM...
     
     
  #20  
Old Posted May 9, 2007, 8:29 PM
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Originally Posted by mikep View Post
AFAIK the other ~20 story project is being built on the site of the old Burnham Hospital at Springfield between 3rd and 4th Street. Foundation work started a month or two ago and there's a construction crane on site that's about the right height for a 200 foot building.
I've gotta get home more. I never knew Burnham was gone!

ô¿ô
     
     
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