Buying new construction or a loft conversion requires a lot of imagination. People often must purchase only a hypothetical home, drawn together in their minds’ eye based on a series of artists’ renderings, one-dimensional floor plans and material samples. They must stand on a plot of dirt and imagine an 82-story skyscraper or look at a beat-up old warehouse and imagine a chic timber loft. As New Homes Magazine gears up to survey the best of the best in this year’s crop of new housing developments, we thought it would be fun to take a look at the progress some of last year’s winners have made.
Magellan Development Group and Studio / Gang / Architects‘ Aqua, New Homes‘ pick for the best new high-rise of 2006, has only recently broken ground, but last year’s pick for best new loft, located in the West Loop, is now nearly complete. From the outside, at least, this selection so far seem to be living up to its title.
W Developments and architect Hirsch Associates have raised the bar on pastiche projects with Odyssey Lofts, 775 W. Jackson Blvd., where two floors of concrete new construction integrate perfectly with the existing six-story brick building. W softened up the dark brick with a lighter and more livable taupe color that accentuates the massive new windows and steel balconies. The top portion, which has sweeping, eye-catching angles and multiple setbacks, will be painted white. Sixteen units remain for sale at the 70-unit development, according to Jameson Realty Group sales agent Barbara Buchel. One-bedroom units with dens are priced from the $260s to the $290s, and two-bedroom units run from the $370s to the $390s. Garage parking is available for $27,900. Buchel said deliveries at Odyssey Lofts will begin in July.