Thursday, August 16, 2018

Curbed Chicago Looks at the Recently Opened Eleven40 Apartment Building

nice view from rooftop at Eleven40
Curbed Chicago looks at the recently opened Eleven40 apartment building at 1140 S. Wabash:
Chicago’s South Loop neighborhood added another 320 apartments on Monday with the grand opening of the Eleven40 rental tower. Named for its approximate address of 1140 S. Wabash Avenue, the glassy 26-story project has been under construction since early 2017 and replaces a former parking lot near the Roosevelt CTA station.

Unlike many other recent South Loop developments hoping to lure luxury buyers with views of Grant Park and the lake, Eleven40 offers a more attainable option with studios priced from $1,500 per month. Starting at 389 square feet, these units are certainly cozy but do offer a degree of flexibility should renters opt for the built-in Murphy bed. Half of the building’s apartments are studios with the remainder split between 80 one-bedroom and 80 two-bedroom layouts.
What caught our attention is the built-in Murphy bed option.  That doesn't seem like a great option to us...but guess it could save you some space when you're not sleeping?

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Hebru Brantley Hosts Event at workVAULT (1420 S. Michigan)

We're big fans of Hebru Brantley and were bummed when his flyboy mural was covered up by the new apartment building Eleven40 - but enough about that. 

Mr. Brantley apparently held a pop-up show at the workVAULT according to this video from his instagram account.  Cool event and also a chance to see how the inside of the co-working/event space at 1420 S. Michigan 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Showroom Food Hall at Marriott Marquis Has a Neighbor Intrigued

A reader writes:
I walked by yesterday, north side of the Marriott on 21st east of Prairie, right across the street from the nice kids/dog park and there was a place called Showroom Food Hall (link here).

Looks like a pretty cool space with several different stands or stations within the cafeteria style space. There were what I assumed to be future staff meeting and prepping for opening. The pizza oven was going in the back. Looks like they'll be opening soon.

Should be a nice blend between the obvious hotel guest / conference traffic and the neighborhood, especially with the park across the street. Easy picnic opportunity.

(Hat tip:  AVS!)

Monday, August 13, 2018

South Loop Pediatrics Opens at 2329 S. Michigan

Looks like Motor Row just got a new pediatricians office (via their website):
Welcome to a New Level of Care in Pediatrics in South Loop
Opening August 1 in South Loop, a new kind of neighborhood pediatric practice by Kimberly T. Brown, MD.

More and more stuff is coming to Motor Row...

(Hat tip:  EH!)

Friday, August 10, 2018

Mormons Buy Into South Loop Real Estate Market

An eye-catching headline for a relatively unimportant article (unless you work in real estate I guess) - Mormon's buy South Loop apartment tower (via Crain's): 
Chicago-based Golub partner CIM Group of Los Angeles has sold a 40-story, 397-unit high-rise at 1001 S. State St. that opened in 2016, according to a statement from the firms. The statement did not disclose the buyer, but people familiar with the deal identified it as an investment arm of the Mormon church, a newcomer to the Chicago apartment market.

Beyond the Mormon twist, why did they sell?  Here is some good rationale:
Apartment developers in downtown Chicago have raked in big profits from apartment sales in recent years, capitalizing on rising rents and property values. The multifamily investment market has cooled a bit in the past year amid concerns about overbuilding, but a glut hasn’t materialized yet.
Still, owning an apartment building in the South Loop will get riskier in the next couple years. Developers will complete nearly 2,900 apartments in the neighborhood in 2018 and 2019, including NEMA Grant Park, a 792-unit tower at the southwest corner of Grant Park, according to consulting firm Integra Realty Resources. The Golub/CIM tower will face competition from a 479-unit project under construction at 808 S. Michigan Ave., about two blocks away.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Some More Info on Restaurants/Bars at the New "Tri-Branded" Hilton Hotel on Cermak (between Michigan and Indiana)

Looks like the "tri-branded" Hilton on Cermak (between Michigan and Indiana) is open judging from this press release on What's interesting to us is the official mention of the food and drink options:
In addition to complimentary breakfast offerings for guests of Hampton Inn and Home2 Suites, as well as the fresh cooked-to-order breakfasts by Hilton Garden Inn, the property has the following dining options that are open to all Windy City visitors and locals alike, including:
  • VU Skyward Bev & Eat: A rooftop dining and lounge experience operated by Concentrics Restaurants, scheduled to open this fall, will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner with locally inspired small plates and craft cocktails amid views of Lake Michigan and Downtown Chicago.
  • Fatpour Tapworks: A street-level pub and grill operated by Big Onion Tavern Group, also scheduled to open in the fall, will offer a selection of menu items including more than 220 beers, all available in 22-ounce pours.
  • Starbucks coffee shop: Easily accessible by guests and locals from Cermak Road.

We've written about Starbucks (which is also now officially open) as well as Fatpour Tapworks, but the rooftop restaurant and lounge is a nice addition - potentially.

Good moves happening down at Motor Row.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Police Investigating Random South Loop Sucker Punches

So strange and unfortunate (via ABC7):
Chicago police are investigating several seemingly random attacks on people near CTA stops in the South Loop.

The victims are punched in the face with no warning or provocation.

Alan Lee has no clue why he was targeted, but his attack left him with a broken nose, concussion and swollen jaw.

"I remember seeing a quick glance of him and his fist winding up, and that's all I really remember. Then I'm on the ground and people were yelling," Lee said.

Lee was with his fiancee walking on Roosevelt near State around 5 p.m. Saturday. They were steps away from the Roosevelt CTA Red Line stop when they said a man emerged from a parking lot and landed a sucker punch before running away.

Be on guard peeps.

Monday, August 6, 2018

What's Pizza? Go to US Pizza Museum at Roosevelt Collection to Find Out

Looks like Museum Campus is getting a new attraction - sort of...(via Chicago Tribune):
The U.S. Pizza Museum is getting a home — for now — at the Roosevelt Collection. The museum is slated to open Aug. 10 in the mixed-use development in Chicago’s South Loop and is scheduled through the end of October. 
Kendall Bruns, the museum founder, said the museum may remain open in that location longer, depending on public demand. 
Bruns created the museum in 2015 as a tribute to all things pizza, but it has existed mostly in the form of pop-up exhibits and online at the museum’s website. The move to the Roosevelt Collection will provide him with 3,000 square feet, twice as much space as the largest of the pop-ups, Bruns said, allowing him to add context to the exhibit items and tell the story of pizza and its makers in the United States.

Admission is free to all ages, but an online reservation is required for timed entry. The first wave of tickets is available now. Click here for tickets.
The museum will be open on Fridays, Saturday and Sundays.

For whatever reason this news makes us think about a segment where Jon Stewart questions whether or not Chicago's famous deep-dish is pizza:

Maybe the museum will solve this....

Or you can see his truce to Chicago Pizza here.

Friday, August 3, 2018

A Lollapalooza Chicago Architecture Refresher

You've probably noticed that it's Lollapalooza week and are well aware of all the wonderfulness and terribleness that comes with that.  While there no doubt will be other news coming from the festivities, we appreciated a recent article on Curbed that naturally takes aim at one of the festivals most noticeable, but sometimes overlooked attributes - the amazing architecture that surrounds the festival:
While the thousands of festival-goers flooding Chicago’s Grant Park this weekend for Lollapalooza are there for the music above all else, there’s no denying that a large part of the four-day event’s appeal is its unique urban setting.

Situated in downtown Chicago’s “front lawn,” the festival owes a lot to its backdrop comprising some of the city’s finest—and newest—architectural gems. Like the ever-changing park itself, the manmade glass and steel scenery has also evolved and expanded since Lollapalooza began in 1991.

Whether you are a first-time visitor to downtown Chicago or a seasoned local in need of a quick refresher, here are some of the notable buildings that comprise the event’s world class skyline setting.

It was a fun refresher for those of us who like these tall buildings.  Naturally, the article included some of the Sloop's tall guys!

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Congress Parkway Renamed to Ida B. Wells Drive

A couple weeks back we wrote about a plan to rename Balbo after journalist Ida B. Wells.  It was met with some resistance, but an alternative was proposed and now seems to be approved (via Curbed):
Chicago’s City Council passed an ordinance to rename Congress Parkway in honor of civil rights activist, anti-lynching journalist, and women’s suffrage leader Ida B. Wells. Stretching from S. Columbus Drive to just east of S. Franklin Street, the newly rechristened Ida B. Wells Drive represents the first street in downtown Chicago to be named for a woman of color.
“I’m proud to have co-sponsored this important measure with Alderman King to give Ida B. Wells the recognition she deserves,” said 42nd Ward Alderman Reilly in an email to residents on Friday. “She was a courageous leader of the women’s suffrage movement and a tireless advocate for justice. Ida B. Wells has an important place in Chicago’s history, and now has a prominent street in downtown Chicago to honor her memory.”

An earlier ordinance, also introduced by King and Reilly, sought to honor Wells by instead renaming nearby Balbo Drive. Originally named 7th Street, the roadway was dedicated to Italian aviator Italo Balbo after he led a squadron of seaplanes on a transatlantic flight from Rome to Chicago for the city’s 1933 Century of Progress World’s Fair. The name proved controversial given Bablo’s role as a fascist organizer and marshal in dictator Benito Mussolini’s air force.

Curbed goes on to note a confusing intersection now:
Ida B. Well Drive extends west to the start of the Eisenhower Expressway and could make for a somewhat confusing intersection where it crosses Wells Street—the existing north-south roadway named for Army Captain William Wells who died at the Battle of Fort Dearborn in 1812.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Enhanced Security Coming to This Week's Lollapalooza

It's lollapalooza week and looks like security measures are being beefed up (via Chicago Tribune):
Expect to see enhanced security — more Chicago police officers, additional fencing, new bag restrictions and airport-style screening at the entrances of Grant Park when Lollapalooza returns Thursday, months after a music festival in Las Vegas was the site of the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
City officials hope their plans for the four-day, star-studded event — featuring Bruno Mars and the Weeknd as headliners — will ease the minds of any concertgoers following news that the Las Vegas attacker also booked rooms at a hotel along Michigan Avenue, across the street from last year's Lollapalooza.

If you're heading the fest expect long lines to get in.  Probably worth it, but prepare.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Infamous Blackhawks Emergency Back-up Goaltender Scott Foster Apparently Works in the Sloop

The Blackhawks Convention invaded the Sloop this past weekend and while their was plenty of typical hockey talk, one of the more interesting tidbits that we read was that last years surprise, emergency back-up goaltender - Scott Foster - apparently works in the Sloop (via Tribune):
As inconspicuously as possible, Scott Foster fidgeted with the pads near his forearm before the Blackhawks-Jets game March 29 until he found a crevice that would help chronicle the time of his hockey life.
“It’s very hard to stuff a cellphone in goalie equipment, but you find a way,” Foster recalled Thursday in the Hawks dressing room at the United Center as the red No. 90 sweater he wore that unforgettable night hung in the locker stall he used. “It was a cool experience and I wanted to share it. I knew I could be professional, so it was OK to be giddy like a kid inside. I wasn’t going to take pictures. I just hid the phone so I could text my wife.”

OMG, it still defies logic that the 36-year-old senior financial accountant began one day last spring crunching numbers at Golub in the South Loop and ended it hearing 22,000 fans chant his name after the emergency goalie played the final 14 minutes in a 6-2 Hawks victory.

If you're not familiar with the story, it's a fun read.