Raise your hand if you've seen these renderings before, we sure haven't. Urban Land Institute published the twin tower mockup for the ex-Spire site in their Sept/Oct magazine issue. Credit Perkins + Will with the design for cylindrical 800' and 1000' mixed-use residential buildings with a possible skybridge connector (a la Petronas Towers). As observers at Skyscraper Page point out, there are discrepancies in the two renderings both in the building format and the surrounding neighborhood infill. The longer, more colored-in view includes a rendered 500 LSD while the close-up has neither 500 LSD or Optima Tower. The other curious thing is the name—Fordham Towers—which is pretty darn close to Fordham Spire, the original name for the supertall when it was first proposed by the Fordham Company in 2005. The site is a new holding of Related Midwest, so we have a misnomer on our hands. Furthermore, Perkins + Will was the architect of record for the Santiago Calatrava-designed Chicago Spire. Basically, these sketches could've been kicking around as conceptual exercises going back several years. They make no appearance on the Perkins + Will website or in general image searches.
New, old, or irrelevant, the designs are a warming thought— that something electric and transformative might still be cooking for a site of such prominence on the skyline. And if architects are starved for concepts, there's always that high-rise vertical farming novelty.
·Highrise Projects & Construction Thread [SSP]
·Chicago Spire Coverage [Curbed Chicago]