Developers have been working on various plans to turn the surface parking lot at 645 W Madison into a tower for quite a while - at least ten years. However, after years of planning, design alterations and exchanging hands, it seems that a building may actually rise from the surface parking lot that currently occupies the property. Initially conceived to be a flat glassy office tower, developer MR Properties altered their strategy after years of trying to court office tenants and finally won Chicago Plan Commission support in April 2012 to move forward with an apartment tower at the West Loop lot. Months later, developer Hines Interests stepped in and scooped up half of the 86,000 square foot site, and reintroduced the idea of new office space. A rendering for a the 20 story glass and steel office tower first emerged in April 2013, but since then, all has been quiet over at 645 W Madison. However, new renderings for the site have surfaced on (where else) the SkyscraperPage Forums recently, that claimed to be 645 W Madison. And indeed, bKL Architecture has confirmed that they are currently working on this project. bKL principal Thomas Kerwin was unable to provide further details other than confirmation that this is their design, however it is exciting to think that a tower may finally be built on the site. bKL has been staying very busy lately, having designed the new apartment tower for 200 N Michigan, the new tower replacing River North's Howard Johnson Inn, as well as the new residences planned for the old Lathrop Homes housing project, which is will eventually be redeveloped. It's still unknown whether the tower is planned to be offices or residences, but with downtown Chicago experiencing an apartment boom, it would not be too surprising if luxury rentals are slated for the site.
·645 Madison [SkyscraperPage Forums]
·Sketching the Boutique Office Tower Planned for 645 W Madison [Curbed Chicago]
·Hines Digs In With Another Downtown Office Proposal [Curbed Chicago]