Terrain and landscaping work is taking shape at the foot of New Eastside‘s 83-story Aon Center, where the owner 601W Companies has planned for a major overhaul of the existing plaza and entry area.
Situated at 200 E Randolph Street, the nearly $7 million undertaking aims to provide a new public space that will serve as a gateway to the 1,136-foot tower, while acting as an extension of the adjacent Grant Park.
Originally designed by Edward Durell Stone and Perkins & Will, the granite-clad tower was completed in 1974 along with the previous iteration of the plaza. The old plaza comprised of a large circular fountain and plaza space that was surrounded by glass enclosures and fencing. The new design by HGA will open up the plaza with grass space and gardens, while providing new gathering spaces with soft seating areas, fire pits, and an outdoor bar. This revamped version also incorporates a sloping front portion that builds in accessible ramps and an elevator.
Located just east of Chicago’s central Loop district, Aon Center is centrally located to a host of different transit options. Visitors and tenants will find bus access for Routes 3, 26, 66, 124, 143, 147, 151, and 157 within a five-minute walk west and Routes 134, 135, and 136 within a five-minute walk north. All CTA L lines can also be accessed in under a 10-minute walk west.
BEAR Construction is currently serving as general contractor, with work on track to reach completion this year. The 2.8 million-square-foot Aon Center is still gearing up for a new $185 million observatory and thrill attraction. According to a recent update from the Chicago Tribune this next phase of construction is still on the table, but now appears to be delayed until next year.
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Start designing the redesign of the plaza. What is all that stuff in the plaza and up on top….a carnival ride and magic mountain?
I really hope they don’t mutilate the top of this tower as shown.
They are ruining a great building with this crap on the side
plaza design looks more open / spacious but still a step back … too mundane.
and what happened to the fountain … too expensive to maintain? this is supposed to be a prime destination!