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The Other Tri-Hotel: 995-Room Project Underway Near O'Hare

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Wacky development alert! River North's Tri-Hotel project isn't the only hotel development to come in threes. Sitting on approvals for some time, developer RASS Hospitality is breaking ground on a 995-room three-building hotel complex on the north side of the Kennedy near the Cumberland Blue Line. That's some 300 rooms above and beyond the heavily publicized River North project. Louis Van Der Wright posted info to Skyscraper Page (SSP) indicating that the site at 8161-8211 West Higgins Road is fenced off and an old motel is being razed to make way for the aesthetic atrocity pictured above (viewed from Higgins). We're covering it because it's in the city proper and stands to make an impression on hundreds of thousands of people moving between O'Hare and the city on a daily basis.

Brandishing the important-sounding name "Chicago Convention Center", this ugly duckling will accommodate five hotel brands, according to an investment analysis (PDF) from early 2011: Starwood Element, IHG Hotel indigo, Staybridge Suites, Hyatt Place, and Hyatt Summerville Suites. Building heights will be 19, 17, and 14 stories. The project has the SSP community all aflutter with most coming down hard on appearance ("Indian millionaires bringing Hyderabad Chic to Chicago") while reserving praise for its relative density and transit-oriented nature (never mind the 1,700+ robotic/automated parking spaces). The project even has what will be the largest hotel green roof in the country at nearly an acre, and is aiming for LEED Platinum designation. Theory: In a startlingly drab and sprawled part of town, this kind of visual explosion may actually find fans.
·Highrise Projects & Construction Thread [SSP]
·Investment Analysis (PDF) [Integra Realty Resources]