Oct
04

Site O-Finally!: O-hoy, Yet Another Skyscraper Inbound for Lakeshore East

October 04, 2014
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Lakeshore East master plan map courtesy of Magellan Development

The Lakeshore East neighborhood between the Loop and the lake probably isn’t one of the most well-known of Chicago’s many self-contained communities, but for skyscraper-watchers it’s been one of the most exciting few blocks in town. Already home to Studio Gang’s famous Aqua tower with another Gang tower likely to soon join it, the planned development conceived as a neighborhood of skyscrapers looks to be gaining yet another. According to bid-monitoring services and also reported by the Chicago Architecture Blog, Magellan Development and McHugh construction are taking bids for an unspecified 60-story mixed use tower “located at the southwest corner of Lakeshore East Park,” a description that could only apply to Lakeshore East’s infamous “Site O,” the narrow strip of undeveloped dirt along Columbus between the Blue Cross Blue Shield building and Aqua tower.

Site O was once thought to be the location of the long-rumored Gang supertall tower, which now appears to be planned for the north end of Lakeshore East instead. Other rumors have flown around about the site for ages, with lots of speculation about whether it would even be possible to build something suitably tall in such a narrow space without the cooperation of the BCBS tower’s owners and without disrupting the views of the hotshots who live in Aqua. The rumors began to solidify about a month ago, when we started hearing reports of ground surveying crews taking measurements of the site.

Now, with McHugh and Magellan actively shopping for subcontractors, it seems we can move the long-awaited Site O project from the “rumor” column to the “lookin’ pretty good” column. Unfortunately, other than the building having 60 floors and being mixed-use, we don’t have any specifics on the design or use. Hopefully Magellan will make an announcement pretty soon, as according to the request for bids they plan to start construction in May 2015.

·Project details [Bidclerk]
·“O” Yeah: Lakeshore East Getting Yet Another Huge Skyscraper [Chi Arch Blog]
·Previous Lakeshore East coverage [Curbed Chicago]

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