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  #101  
Old Posted Oct 21, 2006, 4:50 AM
honte honte is offline
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Originally Posted by the urban politician
^ Looks good, I remember seeing that article before. Just curious--does anyone know what this park is replacing?
Hey everyone,

I had no idea this thread existed! Cool stuff. One more reason to love this forum.

TUP, about four years ago this lot contained a beautiful, four-story Romanesque flats building c. 1885. Alderman Tillman, in her infinite wisdom, decided that it should be torn down for this plaza that somehow "honors" jazz musicians - in the city ward with the most vacant lots, of course. She makes me sick.
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  #102  
Old Posted Oct 21, 2006, 1:45 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honte
TUP, about four years ago this lot contained a beautiful, four-story Romanesque flats building c. 1885. Alderman Tillman, in her infinite wisdom, decided that it should be torn down for this plaza that somehow "honors" jazz musicians - in the city ward with the most vacant lots, of course. She makes me sick.

^ Oh my God, are you serious? That's terrible. Seriously, that bitch needs to get thrown out onto the sidewalk.

That "blues district" she's trying to form on 47nd street is a joke--things like that evolve naturally, not as part of a ridiculous 'master plan'. It's safe to say that she's the biggest obstacle to that part of the south side amounting to anything. As that area slowly gentrifies she'll get ousted, hat first.
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  #103  
Old Posted Oct 21, 2006, 4:42 PM
honte honte is offline
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Especially when she won't lift a finger for the real music or cultural institutions that do (did) exist in her ward - Palm Tavern, Checkerboard Lounge, the old movie theatre on 35th and Michigan, the Forum building at 43rd and King, etc.

I couldn't believe that "Plaza" development when I first saw it. There are lots all over the place there, and it's on one of the city's grandest boulevards. Who needs a plaza, and why do things need to be torn down? Plus, by tearing down that beautiful building, they have exposed the ugly blank rowhouse walls of the building to the south (shown in the rendering), and eroded the urban quality of the corner.

One thing I should mention is that I don't know exactly who started the talk of demolishing the structure. It may well have been the city's fast-track demolition program. But we all know that nothing goes down in her Ward without her control, so I really don't care how it started exactly. Even Landmarks is afraid to suggest things there, lest she start a tantrum.

Last edited by honte; Oct 21, 2006 at 4:48 PM.
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  #104  
Old Posted Oct 25, 2006, 10:51 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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^ Yeah, I posted this article in another thread in response to a question by somebody. I agree with the inconsistency--3500 out of 5700 condos are under contract, which is about 70%. I'm no expert, but why exactly are we saying that sales aren't keeping up with inventory?
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  #105  
Old Posted Oct 27, 2006, 5:15 AM
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I say hang her from her Hat and drown her in the River....a fitting end
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  #106  
Old Posted Oct 28, 2006, 2:35 AM
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Well Done. Ive been taking pics and posting them on SSC but nothing like this. From what I can see this will be a very dramatic entrance to the Museum Campus and Central Station.
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  #107  
Old Posted Oct 28, 2006, 8:16 AM
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^^^^Compleletly agree this is absolutley figgin awesome.....reallly......


Now I realize that this display will never have the immediate visceral impact the bean has, but I think this display is more timeless
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  #108  
Old Posted Oct 28, 2006, 3:56 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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http://www.suntimes.com/business/114...tore28.article
Loehmann's likes Loop
Fashion discounter to open store at State & Randolph

October 28, 2006
BY SANDRA GUY Business Reporter
Loehmann's, a discounter of designer fashions, will open its first store in Chicago next fall at the former Walgreen's location on the northeast corner of State and Randolph.
The store will take the first two levels of the Joffrey Tower, which will house the Joffrey Ballet's offices and rehearsal space and high-end condominiums.

Loehmann's chose the downtown site because of State Street's rebirth as a retail and student-housing mecca, and because people living downtown fit the Loehmann's shopper profile of a fashion-savvy woman whose household income is $85,000 or more, a company spokesman said Friday.

A Loehmann's shopper knows that she can get a good buy at $29.99, but she also understands that buying a top-notch, Italian designer handbag for $400 "is a steal," said Fred Forcellati, vice president of advertising for the Bronx, N.Y.-based Loehmann's.

Loehmann's has successfully emerged from a bankruptcy reorganization that saw the retailer reduce its presence in the Chicago market. In the mid-1990s, Loehmann's had stores in Morton Grove, Downers Grove and Orland Hills. The retailer now operates stores in Northbrook, Oak Brook and Morton Grove.

Loehmann's, now owned by an Islamic bank, operates 60 stores and intends to expand to 100 stores by 2010.

Retail expert Howard Davidowitz said Loehmann's will fill a niche because it is a dressier, more mature version of TJ Maxx.

"Loehmann's makes smaller buys [of merchandise] and therefore has a much more interesting inventory of actual designer and branded merchandise, plus private labels," said Davidowitz, chairman of Davidowitz & Associates Inc., a national retail consulting and investment banking firm in New York.
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  #109  
Old Posted Oct 31, 2006, 2:38 AM
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^ Great news for State Street.
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  #110  
Old Posted Oct 31, 2006, 10:01 AM
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A new museum for Chicago

City could land floating museum
Non-profit group hopes to turn Coast Guard vessel into a riverfront attraction

By William Mullen
Tribune staff reporter
Published October 30, 2006

Long a welcome sight to mariners experiencing trouble on Lake Michigan, the recently retired U.S. Coast Guard cutter Acacia should soon be familiar to strollers and tourists along the banks of the Chicago River.

The decommissioned 180-foot icebreaker and buoy tender was donated to the state of Illinois, which is working with Chicago and the non-profit, locally based American Academy of Industry to make it into a riverfront museum dedicated to the city's rich maritime history.

Moored temporarily at Burns Harbor in Indiana, the 62-year-old Acacia is still outfitted with almost all its working gear--minus machine guns and ammunition.

"The Coast Guard sailed it in here, tied off and left it with us with the engine still running and food in the fridge," academy president Dan Hecker said as he showed off the vessel on a recent Sunday afternoon after the deal was announced.

The boat is to be shifted soon to a Chicago location for the winter. Both the city and the academy would like to have the ship open as a museum by next summer, Hecker said.

Hecker, 46, said he and his brother, Marty, 40, founded the academy in 1995 with the goal of turning a vessel into a maritime museum. Initially, the group boasted more than 200 members. But after years of failed attempts to find a ship, the active number dwindled to "maybe a dozen," he said.

"I was beginning to give the idea up when I got a call last April from a state official asking me if we would be interested in the Acacia," Dan Hecker said.

Plans to sell the ship to an African nation apparently had fallen through, and Coast Guard officials, reviewing their options, pulled a letter from the academy from their files. By law, the Coast Guard could not convey ownership to the academy but arranged to do it through state officials.

City sees benefits

City officials see the Acacia as an asset in their efforts to spruce up the Chicago River's image and are looking at several mooring spots, said Brian Steele, spokesman for the Transportation Department.

Ideally, he said, the ship would go along the river's main branch, perhaps between Clark and Dearborn.

"The concept of the ship becoming a maritime museum is a very appealing one," Steele said. "There are myriad issues that have to be settled in choosing a site for it, including easy public accessibility, making sure the ship does not disturb normal river navigation and incorporating it with city plans for a river walk."

Plans are for much of the ship to be maintained as a time capsule, showing how it worked up to the time of its retirement.

"The initial primary artifact for the museum is the Acacia itself," said Marty Hecker, a Coast Guard naval architect in Maryland. "It is an exceptional ship."......
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  #111  
Old Posted Oct 31, 2006, 3:45 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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Pretty interesting

http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/1...rest31.article
Chicago is classroom for Lake Forest kids

October 31, 2006
BY DAVE NEWBART Staff Reporter
Before going to college, Flor Rico spent little time in the city. "I was a suburbs girl,'' she said.



But now she is in the city as often as three times a week -- including taking a tour of Jane Addams' Hull House for a class last week -- and is considering teaching in the inner city when she graduates.

Rico, 21, of Mundelein, doesn't attend DePaul or Columbia or any campus in the city. Rather, she is a student at tiny Lake Forest College, a liberal arts school whose pristine campus is set in the middle of the affluent North Shore suburb.

Yet the college has embraced the city 34 miles to the south as few similar schools have, launching programs and courses to ensure its students take full advantage of all Chicago has to offer.


CITY COURSES IN THE SUBURBS
Some Chicago courses at Lake Forest College:
• • Medical Mysteries in Chicago

• • Chicago and the Global Economy

• • Sculpture of Abraham Lincoln in Chicago

• • The Funding of Public Education in Chicago

• • Educational Reform in Chicago

• • Social Life of Food

• • Exploring Cultural Stereotypes in Context: From Chicago to Paris

• • Religions of Asia in Chicago

• • Cultural Contributions of Chicago's Latino Communities

• • Reading Performance in Chicago


Operas, museums and Pilsen
The college -- which now bills itself as Chicago National Liberal Arts College -- opened the Center for Chicago Programs last year. Within days of setting foot on campus, the 400 new students take a trip downtown. One-third to one-half of required first-year studies courses incorporate Chicago into the curriculum.
Those classes include everything from public education funding in Chicago to Asian religions in the city to sculptures of Abraham Lincoln. Trips include visiting museums, attending operas, touring Pilsen and interviewing shopkeepers on Devon.

And 60 of the school's 1,400 students are doing internships for credit at Chicago institutions or businesses.

The school is also seeking to set up student-mentoring programs with Ethiopian and Cambodian community associations.

Because few students who attend the school come from the city itself, the courses are particularly eye-opening, officials said. About 60 percent of Lake Forest's are from out of state, and many hail from small towns or suburbs.


Visiting the South Side
Professors acknowledge that students are sometimes taken aback by the trips, including one to the former Stateway Gardens public housing complex, where students met tenants and community organizers.
"That completely blows their mind,'' said Paul Fischer, a political science professor. "Even white students from the suburbs, the idea of going to the South Side is a little bit challenging to them.''

But some of the lessons are simpler, like how to use public transportation. The school does not charter buses or drive cars, but puts students on the Metra, L and buses. Professor Michael Ebner -- who takes students to Hull House and Devon Avenue -- said inevitably, new students can't at first figure out how to put a farecard in a CTA turnstyle.

Growing up, Rico said, "I didn't like strangers. I didn't like public transportation. I was scared.''

She now has a completely different attitude, she said.
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  #112  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 2:43 PM
brian_b brian_b is offline
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Continuing from the downtown student population discussion a few pages ago:

http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/1...loop01.article
Daley calls for more Loop dorms
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun Times
Mayor Daley said Tuesday he wants to build more downtown "superdorms" -- this time with a "side entrance" for staff and faculty -- to turn the Loop into even more of a college town.
The new dorms would be modeled after University Center, the $151 million dormitory partnership between Columbia College, Roosevelt University and DePaul at State and Congress.

"We hope to explore more options, build more facilities [for] students who want to live in the downtown area. It's a great economic boon for the city," Daley said.

"We should have built a side-entrance for staff, professors and assistant professors. The next one we build, we're going to build an opportunity to keep much of their faculty in the downtown area as well."

Roosevelt President Chuck Middleton said the university is interested in "expanding its residential capacity downtown" by 450 beds. Whether or not it will be in a superdorm or a Roosevelt-only dorm is still under study, he said.

"We're growing, as are other institutions downtown. Everybody needs more beds downtown," he said.

The 18-story University Center opened in 2004 to 1,680 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. It has a laundry room with 75 washers and dryers, a game room and an exercise room.

The amenities don't come cheap. On opening day, a studio apartment with a kitchen and private bath went for $1,139 a month. Students sharing a traditional dorm room paid $723 a month and $2,200 for a meal plan.
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  #113  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 5:23 PM
dvidler dvidler is offline
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^^Great, great news. I think the city will use that spot at State & Van Buren (the so called park) as the place where they will sell to a developer. Its a perfect location for a dorm plus that park is used by bums and what not.
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  #114  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 5:46 PM
SamInTheLoop SamInTheLoop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukecuj
A bit of a misleading article if you check the highlighted portion...

Condo sales fall for 2nd straight quarter
(Crain’s) — While the apartment market remains strong in Chicago and the suburbs, downtown condominium sales fell for a second straight quarter, raising concerns that a number of proposed high-rises may ultimately be scrapped.

Condo sales in new buildings fell to about 700 in the third quarter, down from about 1,200 in the second quarter and 1,600 in the first quarter. Sales this quarter also marked a 26% decline from the same period a year ago, according to a report to be released next month by Appraisal Research Counselors, a Chicago-based real estate consulting firm.

That’s bad news for developers, who generally need contracts for about half of their units to get financing required to begin construction.

“Some projects might not get built,” Gail Lissner, a vice-president at Appraisal Research, said during a presentation Wednesday at the Chicagoland Apartment Assn.’s industry outlook meeting.


Related Article Topics | Related Industry News
Appraisal Research tracks residential sales in the city's core, bounded by North Avenue, the lakefront, Cermak Road and as far west as Ashland Avenue.

Ms. Lissner noted that year-to-date condo sales have fallen only about 5% from last year’s record pace and still remain well above sales in the first nine months of 2004 and 2003.

The more stark figures: About 5,700 new condos are being marketed this year, most of which aren’t yet under construction, compared with just 4,700 that were marketed all of last year.

Of those 5,700 new condos, contracts have been signed on about 3,500 units through the third quarter, according to Appraisal Research data. “Sales aren’t keeping pace with new inventory,” Ms. Lissner said in an interview. Despite the decline in sales, Ms. Lissner said two condo developments that started this year are already under construction: CMK Co.’s 1720 S. Michigan Ave. and Mesa Development Co.’s The Legacy at Millennium Park. The third quarter provided more good news for apartment building owners, who are benefiting from job growth in the region along with tight supply because developers have been converting apartments into condominiums and not building many new apartment complexes.

Net apartment rents in the suburbs rose 5.9% in the third quarter from the year-earlier period, while rents downtown for “Class A” apartment buildings rose 8.9%.

Appraisal Research Vice-president Ron DeVries said he thinks the supply-demand trend will continue and cause rents in the suburbs and city to rise another 5% over the next 12 months.
By the way - I think I figured this one out - it's an error in the article. There have been 3,500 TOTAL new condo sales downtown 1st - 3rd quarter this year, not just units that started marketing this year. So of the 5,700 units that have thus far started marketing in 2006, we do not yet know how many have been sold (hopefully after Appraisal Research releases the report in the coming days, we will find out)...
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  #115  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 5:50 PM
SamInTheLoop SamInTheLoop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the urban politician
http://www.suntimes.com/business/114...tore28.article
Loehmann's likes Loop
Fashion discounter to open store at State & Randolph

October 28, 2006
BY SANDRA GUY Business Reporter
Loehmann's, a discounter of designer fashions, will open its first store in Chicago next fall at the former Walgreen's location on the northeast corner of State and Randolph.
The store will take the first two levels of the Joffrey Tower, which will house the Joffrey Ballet's offices and rehearsal space and high-end condominiums.

Loehmann's chose the downtown site because of State Street's rebirth as a retail and student-housing mecca, and because people living downtown fit the Loehmann's shopper profile of a fashion-savvy woman whose household income is $85,000 or more, a company spokesman said Friday.

A Loehmann's shopper knows that she can get a good buy at $29.99, but she also understands that buying a top-notch, Italian designer handbag for $400 "is a steal," said Fred Forcellati, vice president of advertising for the Bronx, N.Y.-based Loehmann's.

Loehmann's has successfully emerged from a bankruptcy reorganization that saw the retailer reduce its presence in the Chicago market. In the mid-1990s, Loehmann's had stores in Morton Grove, Downers Grove and Orland Hills. The retailer now operates stores in Northbrook, Oak Brook and Morton Grove.

Loehmann's, now owned by an Islamic bank, operates 60 stores and intends to expand to 100 stores by 2010.

Retail expert Howard Davidowitz said Loehmann's will fill a niche because it is a dressier, more mature version of TJ Maxx.

"Loehmann's makes smaller buys [of merchandise] and therefore has a much more interesting inventory of actual designer and branded merchandise, plus private labels," said Davidowitz, chairman of Davidowitz & Associates Inc., a national retail consulting and investment banking firm in New York.
Would I love to be a landlord on State Street right now...I think most people have no idea just how strong of a retail market State Street is....People hear news like Carson's closing and they are still caught up in the old mentality that it is struggling - when, in fact, just the opposite is true - the landlords can make so much more money from a wide array of better retailers all clamoring for space on the street, that they are doing everything in their power to kick out the non-performing retailers, whether they be stuffy old department stores or the last of the old "wig" shops from the not-so-pretty days...
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  #116  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 6:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dvidler
^^Great, great news. I think the city will use that spot at State & Van Buren (the so called park) as the place where they will sell to a developer. Its a perfect location for a dorm plus that park is used by bums and what not.
Who owns the parking lots on the NW and SW corners of Wabash/Van Buren? These are prime sites too. These used to be an ugly parking garage and some interesting 1-2 story buildings just a few years ago, if memory serves. Hope something big is cooking
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  #117  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 9:40 PM
SamInTheLoop SamInTheLoop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VivaLFuego
Who owns the parking lots on the NW and SW corners of Wabash/Van Buren? These are prime sites too. These used to be an ugly parking garage and some interesting 1-2 story buildings just a few years ago, if memory serves. Hope something big is cooking
a transaction involving one of them was in the news in the past year or two...didn't there used to be a garage on one that was recently demolished...hhmmm D2? Terrapin? It's coming back to me....
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  #118  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 9:45 PM
SamInTheLoop SamInTheLoop is offline
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^ it might not be one of those but I know an experienced residential developer owns one of them...
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  #119  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 10:13 PM
dvidler dvidler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamInTheLoop
a transaction involving one of them was in the news in the past year or two...didn't there used to be a garage on one that was recently demolished...hhmmm D2? Terrapin? It's coming back to me....
Someone purchased the lot across the street from the Auditorium in plans for student housing. Not sure who or what the plans are.
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  #120  
Old Posted Nov 1, 2006, 11:06 PM
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Busy Bee Busy Bee is offline
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...the landlords can make so much more money from a wide array of better retailers all clamoring for space on the street, that they are doing everything in their power to kick out the non-performing retailers, whether they be stuffy old department stores...
Your right, nothing says progress like losing iconic bastions like historical department stores that have been embedded in the identity of a place for generations.

If even more homogenous corporate chain retailing at the expense of local institutions is heralded as progress, I fear for what we will welcome in the future. And I understand Carson's was owned by a larger corporate parent, but it held of very real regional Chicago image that should have stayed on State Street. I'm crossing my fingers for an announcment to reopen the store in the future.

All the great State Street department stores have been narrowed to one, who would have imagined it would be Sears?
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