On Friday morning I paid a visit to The Legacy at Millennium Park, 60 E Monroe St, for the first time since riding a construction elevator all the way to the tower’s 71st floor. I stayed relatively grounded this time around, going up no higher than the 14th floor, site of in-house amenities like a pool, sauna, and fitness center.
Legacy’s lobby opened last week, and although the building isn’t exactly in need of full-time help out front just yet, seeing as how only a dozen or so units have closed so far, I was greeted on Friday by a door man and a desk attendant upon my arrival. Most of the lobby is located not in the tower itself, but in about one-third of the first floor of the Holabird & Roche-designed Sharp Building, home to many of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago‘s offices and classrooms.
From the Monroe Street entrance, residents and visitors will walk north through the lobby into the Legacy’s mail room, concierge desk, and bank of elevators, barely recognizing the transition from the Sharp into the high-rise itself.
The steel-and-glass awning over the lobby’s entrance doesn’t follow the style of the Sharp Building, but the tower’s developers seem to be making up for that with the preservation and restoration work going on around the corner on Wabash Avenue. Whether you like the idea of a parking deck masked by a Jewelers Row facade or not, the street-wall is intact, and in some cases, should look better than it did before construction began. Not only did Mesa Development restore cornices and other ornaments to several facades along Wabash, but it also commissioned a British company to restore the detail around a western entrance to the Sharp Building using original and new pieces of terra cotta.
Legacy has received certificates of occupancy for 40 of its 72 stories. Crews are still installing glass along the upper third of its western face, and deliveries inside will proceed through most of 2010.