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New office building in the works for the corner of Illinois and LaSalle in River North

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The 12-story project could eliminate another downtown parking lot

Rendering courtesy of Lamar Johnson Collaborative

A River North site with a litigious past could sprout a new office building at the southwest corner of Illinois Street and LaSalle Drive. Here, developers filed a zoning application for a 12-story project that would wrap around the existing landmarked building at 444 N. LaSalle.

Topping out at 183 feet, the proposed structure would contain 7,500 square feet of ground floor retail topped by 11 floors of office space and a rooftop deck. The “transit-served” project contains no parking and is designed by Lamar Johnson Collaborative, the Chicago-based architecture firm currently at the helm of the Uptown Theatre restoration.

The downtown site in question has a complicated past. Project developer Jaime Javors had envisioned a 300-unit apartment tower at the site but saw the plan rejected by 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly. To make matters worse, Javors was held up in a legal dispute with the developer of a proposed 18-story hotel slated for an adjacent parking lot to the immediate south, according to Crain’s.

Jay Koziarz

In other zoning application news, a long-discussed West Loop apartment tower proposed for 1061 W. Van Buren Street is looking to finally move forward with a new partner on board. After unveiling its project in 2014, Ohio-based developer Pizzuti is joining forces with Chicago-based Related Midwest.

The updated Van Buren Street plan calls for a 26-story residential building with 351 units, 69 parking stalls, and ground floor retail space, according to the zoning application. Miami-based Arquitectonica is out as lead designer, replaced by Chicago’s STL Architects. The development site is immediately west of Related’s 30-story Landmark West Loop high-rise which opened in late 2017.

Both the River North and West Loop projects will require zoning approval from the city.