Anyone who had hopes of seeing the X/O Condominium towers rise from the ashes of foreclosure, it's time to face a harsh reality: the project is even more dead than it was the last time it died. Perhaps the symbol of the mid-aughts condo crash, the X/O Condominiums was an ambitious 2-tower residential project that drew a lot of criticism for its fractal-angular design and its planned 479 units despite little evidence of there being a residential market to support it. The project never got off the ground, and in 2009 was hit with a $20 million foreclosure suit when there weren't enough pre-sales to cover expenses.
When the project was being planned, high-rise condos were shooting up in nearly every available corner of the South Loop, but by 2009 the market had taken a steep downward turn. Some condos that were already built were quickly converted to apartments or left to sit mostly empty until the market turned around. Since then, South Loop residents and city developers have looked to X/O as the trademark example for why caution is needed in approaching large developments.
Golub & Co bought the land in 2011 with no plans for it, but according to a tipster to South Loop blog Sloopin, the land has been rezoned for residential use of 6 stories or fewer and the existing structure on the site will be demolished within a few months. No word on what's coming for the site, but whatever it is will most likely be a lot more modest, if not more prudent, than the glass monoliths once imagined to stand there.
Say goodbye to the perhaps-too-ambitious dreams of the city we were but a decade ago, and welcome in its place a sense of cautious perseverance.
· Old XO Site at 1700 S Priaire Rezoned; Demolition of Old Building Coming [Sloopin]