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Two Fulton Market Office Projects Looking to Move Forward

A West Loop community meeting Tuesday night discussed the details about two office projects currently proposed by Shapack Partners in the Fulton Market area. Shapack Partners has been very active in the West Loop, having developed the recently opened Soho House hotel on Green Street as well as the 29 story building just now underway at Halsted and Lake, the first new high-rise construction start of 2015.

Located just northwest of the upcoming 29 story building at the intersection of Halsted Street and Fulton Market is an empty lot. A new office building planned for this lot at 801 West Fulton (next to Glazed and Infused) was the first project to be presented at the meeting. The design is postmodern, with a strong focus on replicating the details of Chicago School style multi-level warehouse structures which populate the Fulton Market area. The wide windows would be typical to what is found on nearby older structures with large expanses of glass between heavy brick piers, with three sides of the building to have glazing.

The design of the project is being prepared for a single office tenant to take the entire building under lease. The prospective tenant was not announced, but it was mentioned that the lease remains under negotiation at this time. The building is expected to rise six stories, plus a seventh floor penthouse with access to a roof top deck. The design is being influenced largely by the recently adopted guidelines of the Fulton Market Innovation District (FMID) Plan in which the Department of Planning has specified that structures should not be taller than 80 feet at the Fulton Market Gateway. Additionally, the plan specifies no new residential uses north of Lake Street will be permitted with zoning changes going forward. As such, this commercial building's roof according to the Planned Development Application comes in at 79'-3", with a decorative parapet rising to 84'-3". In addition to office space, the ground floor will contain just under 8,300 square feet of retail space. Aside from neighbor concerns over noise which may emanate from the roof deck, there weren't any objections to the plan for 801 West Fulton which is now set to move forward through the formal approval process.

To the west, a second proposed Planned Development spans three properties located from 213-221 North Peoria Street on the west to 211-219 North Green Street on the east, with 210-222 North Green Street in the middle. The proposed Planned Development will be split into three "sub areas" known as C, B and A, respectively. The middle property (Sub Area B) currently has the six story timber loft and a three story concrete loft structure formally known as Amity Packing, Inc. This building pair is now under renovation for transformation into space for WeWork, a coworking and private office space provider. WeWork will occupy all floors of the building, as well as the the basement space. The ground floor will include some retail space as well as the WeBike, a bike share program containing 223 bicycles that will be open to the public. Across Green Street to the east is an empty lot (Sub Area A) which will hold a new construction, single story restaurant.

Behind the WeWork Building is an empty lot which had previously served as the loading dock for Amity Packing. The dock structure was demolished and the site is the location of the taller office building being presented. The lot at 213-221 N Peoria (Sub Area C) is currently considered for a 10-11 story building, with unused Floor Area Ratio (FAR) from other sub areas to the east being consolidated onto Sub Area C, providing for the taller structure's concentration of density which otherwise could be spread more evenly across the planned development's three properties. Neighborhood concerns over height, a major sticking point among nearby residents despite being walking distance to the Loop, caused the proposal to shrink from an original concept of 13 floors down to ten.

Shawn Ursini

·Tuesday Meeting Will Cover Two Fulton Market Office Proposals [Curbed Chicago]
·Previous Fulton Market coverage [Curbed Chicago]