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ChicagoSouth Side

Whole Foods goes where urban renewal went to die

Englewood, Chicago

Ten years ago reporter John McCarron wrote this about Englewood: This is the place urban renewal came to die. It died during the early ’70s, right here in Chicago, at the intersection of 63rd and Halsted Streets. By then, so much had been dying in the neighborhood called Englewood—shopping, housing, young men, hope for the ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on September 5, 2013
North ShoreWinnetka

Renovated office space in Winnetka

874 Green Bay Winnetka

My itinerary last Friday and Saturday started in Winnetka and moved on to Evanston, Park Ridge, the city and Highland Park. BJB Evanston, one of our sponsors, has a renovated retail / office building at 874 Green Bay Rd in Winnetka, at the intersection of Tower Rd and Green Bay. The building is in the ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on August 12, 2013
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

A stalled 1K Fulton and Google rumors

1K Fulton

Ever since Crain’s reported that Google is considering a move to the new 1K Fulton development in the West Loop commenters at various websites have treated the deal as a fait accompli that would precipitate imminent change in the area. Here’s how Crain’s phrased the impact: If a deal is struck, it would dramatically reshape ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on June 17, 2013
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

The Loop’s blue building on LaSalle Street

10 S LaSalle

All that remains of the circa-1910 Otis Building at 10 S LaSalle is four stories of its original façade, and it’s all you may have ever noticed of the 37-story tower that replaced it. I’d passed the building many times without ever looking up to see the 1986-vintage skyscraper behind the classic terra cotta and ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on April 4, 2013
ChicagoNorth Side

Mariano’s updates – Bucktown and Ravenswood

Mariano's

Foundation work appeared to be nearly complete on the new Ravenswood Mariano’s Fresh Market when I stopped by last Saturday. The site is on the north side of Lawrence and is bounded on the east by the Metra tracks. The site of the Bucktown Mariano’s, pictured above, is at Webster and Ashland, just east of ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on March 18, 2013
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Will Fifield “tack on” a hotel and 350 apartments to a West Loop office tower?

Chicago's West Loop

We haven’t added Steve Fifield‘s site at 601-625 W Monroe in the West Loop to our list of new downtown apartment projects, because current plans call only for a 40-story office tower. The current plans are subject to change, according to Crain’s Chicago Real Estate Daily: “This is a city of skyscrapers,” Mr. Fifield said. ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on February 18, 2013
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

The Maxwell moves forward without apartments

The Maxwell site, Canal & Taylor

The Bond Companies has apparently made a major change in its plans for The Maxwell, a development at Clinton, Canal and Roosevelt. Earlier plans called for a mix of retail and residential on the 3.9 acre site. The residential component would have included 370 apartments above 200,000 square feet of retail. That plan faced several ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on December 3, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Demolition update – Clybourn Corridor retail sites

Site of Shops on

If you think that the Clybourn Corridor already has enough retail outlets, you’d be lining up on a different side of that issue than some local landowners. CRM Properties Group has nearly completed clearing the site on the southwest corner of Weed and Fremont. This is one of four parcels totaling 110,000 square feet of ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on November 28, 2012
ChicagoNorth Side

Church barbeque gives way to Walgreens sushi on Armitage

Walgreens site on Armitage

Back in the day you could count on some of Chicago’s best barbeque outside the Greater Little Rock Church at Armitage and Dayton in the DePaul – Sheffield neighborhood. The site is slated for development of a 3-story Walgreens, and demolition of the church was far along when I visited yesterday afternoon. The new store ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on November 20, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Fulton Market impact development underway

Fulton Market Cold Storage

An “impact development” is one that’s likely to spur substantial change in its immediate area. The Fulton Market neighborhood in the West Loop is an interesting, mixed-use area with only sparse residential development. The make-over of the 1923-vintage Fulton Market Cold Storage Building, which is currently in the demolition phase, will add a large number ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on November 14, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Keeping up with the Wolf Point development

Aerial view of Wolf Point, Chicago

Wolf Point is an iconic site at the junction of the North, South and Main branches of the Chicago River. A proposed three-tower residential and office development at Wolf Point has drawn a great deal of interest and will continue to do so as the project proceeds to final approvals and construction. The project’s size, ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on November 6, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Construction check – Pete’s Fresh Market on Madison

Pete's Fresh Market site

A month ago we noted that construction was slated to start this month on the new Pete’s Fresh Market at the southeast corner of Madison and Western. And start it has, as we saw during a fly-by two weeks ago. Back in March we recalled that five years earlier the immediate area had been the ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on September 24, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

The West Loop Target stands out

Target aerial

As you approach downtown Chicago from the air, or along the Eisenhower Expressway, one building is a clear, colorful standout. It’s the huge new West Loop Target, which is slated to open in October. The store, on a 4-acre site at Jackson and Aberdeen, will have nearly 400 parking spaces at ground level, bike racks, ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on September 13, 2012
ChicagoNorthwest Side

Calling a bottom at Logan View in Logan Square

3125 W Fullerton Chicago

It’s been 5 years to the day since we reported price reductions and a “developer closeout” at Logan View Condominiums, 3125 W Fullerton, in Logan Square. After glancing at the record of a 3-bedroom, 2-bath unit that sold for $388,000 in 2006 and resold last month for $200,000, I headed to the site yesterday for ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on July 31, 2012
News & trendsArchitecture & design

Building a 30-story hotel in fifteen days

Hotel construction in China

Chicago’s new downtown apartment towers are rising toward their full height at a rapid pace – a floor every three days in some instances. Once these towers are topped out, however, another six months or more will be required to make them ready for occupancy. We recently learned, via Gizmodo, of a 30-story hotel in ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on July 5, 2012
ChicagoFar North

U Lucky Dawg site in West Rogers Park will remain sacred ground

6821 N Western Ave Chicago

For many Chicagoans there’s no piece of ground more sacred than the one that hosts their favorite hot dog stand. U Lucky Dawg, 6821 N Western Ave, closed not long after I took the above photo in July of 2008, and only several years after changing its name from Fluky’s. According to Crain’s Chicago Real ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on June 20, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

From the archives: Fox & Obel in the South Loop

Trader Joe's

Five years ago today we mentioned a Sun-Times story suggesting that Fox & Obel might open a South Loop store at the northeast corner of Roosevelt and Wabash. We asked what a Fox & Obel opening would mean for the South Loop and commenters responded that it would be a positive development and “exactly what ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on June 5, 2012
News & trendsArchitecture & design

A visit to the top of One World Trade Center

One World Trade Center

We don’t normally range as far afield as New York for our posts, but it’s hard to resist meeting the ironworkers at One World Trade Center in New York, as the building nears its symbolic height of 1,776 feet. The architects from SOM describe the steel-frame building as “the strongest skyscraper in the world.” A ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on April 18, 2012

Quote of the day – 1,000s of professionals in scores of storefronts

Washington Park streetscape Chicago

The Tribune and the Sun-Times reported on Ald. Proco Joe Moreno‘s proposal, which passed the City Council Zoning Committee, to allow a portion of commercial space to be used for residences. From the Sun-Times: Moreno predicted that “thousands” of professionals would take advantage of the change, filling scores of vacant storefronts and building the city’s ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on March 23, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

McCormick Place deal dead, Old Main Post Office in the wings

McCormick Place site

I’m frequently stunned by the credulity of Chicago’s major media. While Crain’s Chicago Business was reporting a “massive hotel, retail and entertainment project next to McCormick Place” last October, I supplied the following take on the developer: I can’t spend much time on Winners Development’s website without gagging on what strikes me as a mound ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on March 22, 2012