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Plan for Evanston’s tallest building returns with revisions

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The 33-story proposal is back with a new-look podium

At 33 stories, 601 Davis Street [center] would surpass the 22-story Chase Bank Tower [left] to the immediate northwest to become Evanston’s tallest building.
Solomon Cordwell Buenz

The two-story landmarked University Building [right] at the corner of Davis and Chicago Avenue will also be preserved and rehabilitated under Vermillion’s high-rise plan.
Solomon Cordwell Buenz

A 33-story apartment tower poised to become downtown Evanston’s tallest building is looking to move forward with a new, modified design. Slated to replace a drive-through bank and vacant lot at 601 Davis Street, the high-rise from Vermillion Development and architect Solomon Cordwell Buenz called for 318 dwelling units, parking for 179 vehicles, and roughly 6,700 square feet of ground floor retail space when it was first shown to Evanston residents in March.

Though the overall scale of the project remains at 353 feet, the latest design has reduced the height of the building’s podium by five feet. According to Evanston Now, the design of the podium has also been modified to better reflect the look and materials of existing nearby buildings. Apartment count remains unchanged at 318 while parking was reduced by three spots for a new total of 176 stalls.

The previous podium design as viewed from Davis Street [top] versus the latest version of the plan [bottom].
Solomon Cordwell Buenz

The updated plan was released just prior to 601 Davis Street’s expected appearance before Evanston’s Preservation Commission this evening. The project will then head to the Design and Project Review Committee. From there, it is anticipated to go before the Evanston Plan Commission next month and finally the City Council for final approvals in early 2018.

If realized, Vermillion’s tower may not even hold the title of Evanston’s tallest building for very long. Last month, Farpoint Development and architect Skidmore, Owings & Merrill presented a 37-story proposal for the 1700 block of Sherman Avenue. Though still in the early discussion phases, the project calls for a 395-foot combination hotel/apartment tower atop a new performance venue for Northlight Theatre.