An initial public hearing was held for the potential financing of the first phase of the residential development at 400 N Lake Shore Drive in Streeterville. Held by the Illinois Housing Development Authority for the project under its formal address of 462 E North Water Street, the proposal looks to redevelop the long vacant site originally meant for the canceled Chicago Spire. Now developer Related Midwest appears to be resuming its work for their multi-phase plan designed by SOM.
Sitting on perhaps one of the most notorious sites in the city with its large hole originally meant for the supertall skyscraper, current concepts call for a two-tower project sitting on landscaped ground with a path to the upcoming DuSable Park. Plans for these two were originally revealed multiple years ago with a central podium, hotel component, and taller heights, all of which were scrapped or revised due to local resident feedback.
Although updated drawings and plans have not been revealed, original plans call for two diamond-shaped structures facing away from each other with a cascading form thinning out as it rises. Phase one would be the taller north tower capping out around 840-feet according to the SOM website, with the shorter southern tower in phase two originally set to rise around 765-feet in height. Both will be connected by a green park and shared central vehicle loop, leading to a 300-vehicle underground parking garage.
The structure will be made up of columns of bay windows with a champagne-colored panel system, a departure from the original terracotta exterior. Phase one’s 73-story north tower will contain a small cafe on the ground floor, a dog spa, large lobby, parking garage ramps, and other back of house spaces. This will be capped by 635-residential units which will be for-lease apartments, of which 20-percent or around 127-units will be considered affordable for those making 60-percent AMI.
The hearing held July 20th was just part of a nearly 30-week process needed to fully approve the issuance of bonds for the project. These bonds will add up to $510 million in total and be split between $300 million in tax-exempt bonds and $210 in taxable bonds. While unclear for this case, IHDA itself can also act as a lender for projects via this program. IDHA will now proceed with the rest of its process which will include a hearing for the tax-exempt bonds as part of the Tax-Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act (TEFRA).
Meanwhile Related applied for caisson permits last year which have not been issued yet, these include three-stories for the aforementioned underground parking garage. Currently no groundbreaking date is known, but the process from IDHA shows a new sign of life for the overall proposal. A potential height increase is still a possibility for the second phase tower expected to be made up of for-sale condos instead.