Downtown Alderman Brendan Reilly announced in his newsletter that Centrum Partners will be holding a public meeting later this month to present a building proposal for the parking lot at 215 W Hubbard to the community. The property in question contains a challenging design constraint due to the elevated L tracks that curve through the northwest corner of the lot, which made it seem like that property would remain a parking lot for life. And yet, thanks to the leaked design renders, we have a look at exactly how that L-curve will be handled — with a curved building. The development actually includes two buildings, the curvy 8-story office building inside the bend of the L tracks on the corner, as well as a 22-story residential tower further to the west on Hubbard. Both towers are almost completely glass-covered, with the residential tower appearing to sport a few balconies, and both will include ground-floor retail space. The taller building is currently set to include 193 apartments and 92 parking spaces to serve both buildings, but that tends to be the first number to change in downtown proposals once the city and public get involved.
Earlier this week, we made a plea to developers to build over existing surface lots, as one of the most common traits of these lots are that they waste high-value space with close proximity to L tracks. Developers would obviously prefer to have as few constraints on their design as possible, and the city isn't going to let anybody relocate the L tracks to make it easier to build. This River North proposal looks like a clever and tasteful solution to that challenge, and it's a great sign that developers are willing to get creative and embrace site constraints in order to take advantage in the strengthening real estate market.
Reilly, Centrum, and the River North Residents Association will hold its public presentation for this proposal at the Paris Club (59 W Hubbard) on March 31st at 6 p.m.
·Mapping the Parking Lots That Need to be Developed Pronto [Curbed Chicago]
·Previous River North coverage [Curbed Chicago]