Work is currently underway on the conversion of the historic 15-story office tower at 226 W Jackson Boulevard in The Loop. The building is the former headquarters of Chicago & North Western Railway and most recently was the headquarters building for City Colleges of Chicago. Located at the northeast corner of W Jackson Boulevard and S Franklin Street, the edifice is across the street from the Willis Tower, formerly Sears Tower. Phoenix Development Partners is in charge of this development, with an estimated development cost of $136 million, which includes the property acquisition cost of $32.7 million.
The building was originally designed by Frost and Granger, completed in 1904. The new conversion, designed by Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture, looks to turn the old office space into two new hotels. The interior will be fully gutted and replaced with dual-brand Hilton. The property will be split between a 135-room Hilton Garden Inn on the lower floors and a Canopy by Hilton with 214 rooms on the upper floors.
The building conversion will take over 232,000 square feet of space, featuring a 4,800-square-foot rooftop bar and restaurant available to guests of both hotel brands. There will also be 2,100 square feet of outdoor terraces as well as 2,500 square feet of meeting rooms.
The existing building was given landmark status in February 2020 accompanied by a Class L tax incentive. A Class L property tax break allows designated landmarks to have their property taxes set at a lower rate for 12 years if owners agree to invest at least half of the value of the development on an approved rehabilitation project.
The project estimates an 18-month timeline for construction with completion estimated for spring 2021. Permits for renovation were issued in April 2020, with Leopardo Companies as the general contractor for the project.