Coverage of the Grant Park Conservancy's recent Tuesday night meeting at the new Maggie Daley Park field house rightfully focused on the angst over the park's dog ban, and potential compromises floated to placate angry owners. But after talking with Bob O'Neill, President of the Grant Park Conservancy, about his vision going forward, the planned restaurant on the south end of the park may end up generating plenty of attention. Still in its very preliminary planning stages, with construction possible in June and an anticipated early 2016 opening, the project by SPACE Architects and Site Design Group will take root at a site down the street from the Modern Wing, which O'Neill hopes becomes a focal point for the area and an example of progressive design.
"Design is paramount, given its location," he says. "We've lost some of our edge in architecture, and sometimes these small properties can be game changers."
SPACE Architects wasn't ready to comment on its plans or show any sketches yet, but it'll be interesting to see what the firm behind the Half Acre Tap Room, Telegraph and the Logan Theater renovation does with such marquee real estate. O'Neill aims for a design process mirroring the one used for the skate park, with plenty of feedback and public hearings; he mentioned the Lucas Museum as an example of what not to do. A decade after the Park Grill, we should strive for something more interesting, he added.
·Previous Maggie Daley Park coverage [Curbed Chicago]