YoChicago has its roots in print – the glossy-covered, tabloid-sized New Homes Magazine that we published from the early 90s through 2008.
One of New Homes’ most popular features was a “best new homes” of the year issue, published in April. Our then long-time editor, Barry Pearce, oversaw the selection process. He knew every corner of Chicago, had an unmatched familiarity with new home developments in the city, and a fierce, Medill-instilled independence from the publication’s many advertisers.
Pearce adopted the persona of a typical homebuyer when selecting the best new options among all the housing types throughout the city each year. And, like many a homebuyer during the boom years, he sometimes misjudged a project’s ultimate success.
The Lucien Lagrange-designed X/O Condominiums, which was selected as the best new high-rise over 20 stories for 2007 was a project that some loved and others despised. It remains unbuilt, a victim of rabid NIMBYism, market-timing and what some saw as aldermanic thuggery. It still lives as a “current project” at Kargil Development’s Web site.
In the above video, developers Keith Giles and Jerry Karlik walk me through the details of the project. In separate video segments they talk about the evolving South Loop real estate market and the experience of working with Lucien Lagrange.