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Massive Development at the Former Gonnella Bakery Preparing to Finally Rise?

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After sitting idle for half a year, what's going on at the sprawling River West site?

A long-discussed, mixed-use project at site of the former Gonnella bread factory in River West might finally be ready to begin construction after sitting idle for over six months. Located at 1001 W. Chicago Avenue and spanning the better part of a city block, the proposal calls for a grocery store and a pair of 13- and 15-story apartment building designed by FitzGerald Associates. After receiving full city entitlements in late 2014, the property was sold by Seattle-based Security Properties to local developer Bond Cos. for $16.8 million in 2015. The Chicago-based firm retained the FitzGerald design and demolished the bakery complex late last year.

While little work has occurred at 1001 W. Chicago since the lot was cleared, the massive project could be getting ready to finally move forward. Though the developer could not be reached for immediate comment, a survey crew on-site mentioned that caisson work could start in as little as two weeks time. If this information is correct, expect to see building permits issued shortly. While Chicago’s River West neighborhood has experienced a number of new development thanks to its proximity to downtown and the CTA Blue Line, 1001 W. Chicago is hands down the biggest new project to come down the pike in recent years.