As the economy improves, construction reconvenes in Chicago.  We are now seeing more construction of skyscrapers than in the past four years. Since there are so many new construction projects throughout the city, we have picked our top five up-and-coming buildings surrounding the Chicago River that are sure to have an impact on Chicago’s skyline.

1. Wolf Point Towers

Amid controversy, lawsuits and disgruntled neighbors, Wolf Point Towers will become a reality next month when construction begins.  The speculated date of groundbreaking is July 31st.  The $1 billion project is backed by the Kennedy family and Hines. There will be a West, East, and South tower. The South tower will be the showstopper, the curving building will be 950 ft high.

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2. 200 North Riverside Plaza

North Riverside Plaza will have an incredible impact on the Chicago River architectural landscape.  The 50 floor office building is being constructed on the old Lake /Canal Street parking lot. The skyscraper will have unobstructed views of the Chicago River.  The building is being developed by Hines and designed by Pickard Chilton.  Completion is expected by 2015.

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3. 111 West Wacker

After 8 years of construction, 111 West Wacker is nearly completed.  The upcoming residential building once was an eyesore after Shangri-La hotel chain abandoned construction of the 1047 feet tower in 2008.  Instead Related Midwest and Handel Architects and Epstein revised the plans and redesigned a beautiful building that is only 59 stories tall and 630 feet. Construction is expected to be completed by 2014.

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4. Optima Center Chicago

Close to our office, Optima Center Chicago will definitely add more pizzazz to Streeterville. The LEED certified tower boast 40 stories of glass and will include 325 luxury apartments, a 235 car parking garage and over 22,000 square feet of commercial and retail space.  Designed by nationally renowned architect David Hovey, the building will be delivered this year.

Optima Center Chicago

5. 435 North Park

Beside the Optima Center is 435 North Park where the Lowes Hotel will be the main tenant.  The building will have 400 hotel rooms, 398 residential units and 230 parking spaces.  Construction is expected to be completed in 2014.

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