SOAR Real Estate Committee – LookBack 2012


Did you ever wonder what life would be like in Streeterville if SOAR was not here working on your behalf?   We can only imagine there would be above ground open air parking garages on every block, the traffic congestion would be even more unbearable, the buildings would have ugly blank walls, there would be exposed loading docks and less landscaping and flowers!

SOAR has been here and the neighborhood is a better place because of it.  SOAR’s Real Estate Committee had a busy year of reviewing numerous developments and issues throughout the neighborhood.  Following is a brief look at them:

The Outpatient Care Pavilion - Northwestern Memorial Hospital at Ontario/Fairbanks/Erie. Construction is underway for this approximately 400 foot high, office and surgical tower with 575 parking spaces.

410 E. Grand – Golub & Co’s new rental and office towers were approved this year. The plans include a 45 story, 490 unit rental tower and a 5 story office tower on the Ohio St. side with a 296 car parking garage.

200 E. Illinois – Optima’s new rental tower is currently under construction. Plans are for a 420 foot high, 42 story tower with an 8 story parking garage for 238 cars in the base.

435 N. Park Dr. - DRW Holdings is currently under construction  with plans to build a 625 foot high, 55 story, 400 hotel rooms and 398 rental unit building with a 230 car parking garage at the base.

850 N. Lake Shore – Redevelopment plans have changed. The owner has switched from senior housing to developing a luxury rental building

Navy Pier Re-Envisioning – SOAR reviewed the 5 finalist teams’ plans to re-envision Navy Pier for 2016’s 100th anniversary of Navy Pier. The Children’s Museum is going to be staying on the Pier and expanding.

Marriott Hotel on Michigan Avenue Ballroom - SOAR reviewed and commented on the proposed plans for a new ballroom on top the roof of the podium base building.

State/Chestnut/Pearson - Loyola Business School and Newcastle Ltd. Rental Tower  – SOAR is currently reviewing plans for a new business school for Loyola University on the south section of the parcel and a new rental tower on the north section.  The rental tower would be 36 stories, 410 feet tall, 367 units.  The business school would be 10 stories and 190 feet tall.

Original Prentice Hospital – Northwestern University is hoping to demolish the old Prentice Hospital to make way for a new medical research building.  SOAR discussed this issue throughout the year but did not support the land marking of this building

Lurie Children’s Hospital opened – the new Children’s Hospital on Chicago Avenue opened this summer with the heliport approved.

Ronald McDonald House opened – the largest Ronald McDonald House in the world opened this summer at 211 E. Grand with 86 rooms, 14 stories and a lovely green roof deck.

The VA Hospital site – NMH has agreed to install wrought iron fencing and prairie plantings on the vacant parcel to help beautify the area.

AMC Liquor License – The AMC Theaters on Illinois St. applied for a liquor license to serve alcohol in their new bar at the theater.

900 DeWitt zoning change – The owner of 900 DeWitt would like to change the zoning of his property to commercial so that it can operate as a hotel instead of a rental building.

Ohio St. Beach restaurant – There was a new restaurant on the Ohio Street Beach this summer.  They received a liquor license for this location.

Ivy Hotel 227 E. Ontario and Raffaello Hotel on 201 E. Delaware developed roof deck lounges which created light and sound issues for neighboring buildings. SOAR worked to mediate and mitigate the issues.

Streeterville Clean Up – SOAR organized the Streeterville Clean Up in April to clean up our streets and parks prior to the summer.

Dangerous intersection of Columbus and Illinois – after two deaths, the city installed red light cameras and new signage at this intersection. SOAR worked to provide solutions to improving the safety of this intersection.