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Michigan Avenue’s Realtor Building tapped for big makeover, vertical expansion

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The outdated office building is getting a glassy new crown

Rending by Healy | Bender & Associates, Inc

The National Association of Realtors is hanging onto its long-time Mag Mile digs next to the Wrigley Building after all. Instead of redeveloping the downtown property, the group is preparing a $45 million overhaul the 12-story building at 430 N. Michigan Avenue.

Spearheaded by partner One Development and designed by architect Healy, Bender & Associates the project will add roughly 18,000 square feet to the building thanks to a new 13th-floor addition containing offices and striking glass-walled circular boardroom, reported Crain’s.

The group floated a proposal in 2013 to knock down the architecturally unremarkable structure in favor of a new plaza and mixed-use skyscraper rising on the large lot to the immediate west. This tower never materialized and a retail complex is currently in the works for the neighboring parcel at 443 N. Wabash Avenue.

The upcoming vertical expansion represents the Realtor Building’s second height increase over the course of its 56 year history. In 1962, it originally stood at 10 stories before adding two floors in 1991. Its owners hope to begin construction soon and finish the 13th-floor addition in the second half of 2019. Work will then focus on renovating the existing office floors below.

The real estate surrounding the Michigan Avenue’s DuSable Bridge is especially hot as evident by developments like the LondonHouse Hotel and Norman Foster’s Apple Store at Pioneer Court. Other notable projects include a pair of glassy Optima-branded rental buildings, the soon-to-open Chicago Architecture Center, and an ambitious plan to convert Tribune Tower to condos and erect a 1,400-foot supertall skyscraper next door.

Rending by Griskelis Young Harrell
Rending by Griskelis Young Harrell