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Glassy high-rise condo proposal for Jefferson and Fulton dead, says Alderman

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The 27-story tower would have replaced a parking lot

217 N. Jefferson
Google Street View

After breaking cover last summer only to go worryingly silent, a 27-story luxury condo proposal slated for the small surface lot at 217 N. Jefferson in Chicago’s Fulton River District will not be moving forward after all. Last night at a Neighbors of West Loop community meeting, 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly cited issues regarding the height and density of the project as well as the narrowness of the site creating a very tall and potentially unattractive parking garage. Developed by JDL and designed by Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture, the glassy tower would have contained just 94 residences costing between $800,000 and $3 million plus parking for 96 vehicles.

Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture

“After we got some feedback from the neighbors and tried to negotiate this with the developer, it became very clear that the proposal wasn’t in any shape to move forward,” explained the Alderman. “We told the developer to shelve that and go back to the drawing board and come back with something more appropriate for the neighborhood context—a little lower in height and also in density to be more like the surrounding [low-rise] properties.”

According to Reilly, the developer has not engaged his office for “several months” and appears to be in no rush to present an updated plan for the site. The property also includes the existing office building on the south side of the site and is fully tenanted. The ground floor space previously occupied by Trattoria Isabella, however, has sat vacant since the Italian eatery announced it would be closing its Fulton River District location in September.

If JDL re-approaches Reilly’s office with a fresh proposal, the Alderman said he would restart the community engagement process. The Chicago-based developer is currently working on the No. 9 Walton condo tower under construction in the Gold Coast as well as a 22-story rental development that recently topped-out at the site of River North’s old Ed Debevic’s restaurant.