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I took a walk through my old neighborhood (Lakeshore East) last week and took a few snaps. You'll notice that a lot of the buildings are blue glass and white spandrels. The mayor likes buildings in this area to look like that because it blends well with the lake just a few feet away.

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Two Prudential Plaza

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Trump International Hotel and Tower

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The Tides. Pretty generic, but I think the picture came out good.

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The Tides

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The Shoreham. I used to live here. Low income housing on floors 3-15. The rest is market rate ($2,000/month for 817 square feet, which is why I left)

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The Regatta - another generic apartment building.

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Construction is underway on the Chicago Spire - 150 stories - 2,000 feet.

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The Chandler - apartment building

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One Prudential Plaza. Was the tallest building in the city until the boom of the 70's and 80's. The mast was the transmission antenna for WGN-TV until the John Hancock Center went up.

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NBC Tower - This is where they do The Jerry Springer Show, iVillage (moving from Orlando later this month), The Steve Wilkos Show, and Judge Mathis. Formerly home to the Jenny Jones Show.

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Four Mile Crib. Four miles out into the lake. It's one of five or so drinking water intakes for the city.

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The Elysian. Another apartment building. I liked the way the cranes contrast with the sky.

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New Eastside skyline

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A recreated patch of Illinois prairie in the middle of the city. It's actually on top of a parking garage and a commuter train station.

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Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois. It was one of the tallest in the neighborhood, but now it's considered tiny so they're adding another 32 stories on top of it (67 total, I think)

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Aon Center - Second tallest in the city for right now.

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340 On The Park - green residential skyscraper loaded with environmentally-friendly stuff. Opened a couple of months ago. Won a bunch of awards for being green.

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I took a walk through my old neighborhood (Lakeshore East) last week and took a few snaps. You'll notice that a lot of the buildings are blue glass and white spandrels. The mayor likes buildings in this area to look like that because it blends well with the lake just a few feet away.

Two Prudential Plaza

Trump International Hotel and Tower

The Tides. Pretty generic, but I think the picture came out good.

The Tides

The Shoreham. I used to live here. Low income housing on floors 3-15. The rest is market rate ($2,000/month for 817 square feet, which is why I left)

1190322098.jpg

The Regatta - another generic apartment building.

At first glance, some of those look like blown out windows. Tha'ts cool how they open, although it doesn't look like very much.

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At first glance, some of those look like blown out windows. Tha'ts cool how they open, although it doesn't look like very much.

No, they don't open very much -- maybe three inches or so. it's better that way, though. These buildings along the water need to be seriously aerodynamic. it's bad enough when it's just wind and dry -- all of the buildings are designed to sway and you can hear them creak as you sleep as if you're on a hammock in the belly of a pirate ship.

But you wouldn't believe what a strong winter storm off the lake will do. It's positively frightening. The wind blows a mist off the water that coats the buildings in a thick layer of ice. Of course, inside you've got the heat on so the ice can't cling to the building the way it wants to and when it gets to about two inches thick it cracks and breaks off in sheets about the size of a pickup truck that fly through the air and smash themselves to bits against the other buildings, or on the sidewalk below.

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No, they don't open very much -- maybe three inches or so. it's better that way, though. These buildings along the water need to be seriously aerodynamic. it's bad enough when it's just wind and dry -- all of the buildings are designed to sway and you can hear them creak as you sleep as if you're on a hammock in the belly of a pirate ship.

But you wouldn't believe what a strong winter storm off the lake will do. It's positively frightening. The wind blows a mist off the water that coats the buildings in a thick layer of ice. Of course, inside you've got the heat on so the ice can't cling to the building the way it wants to and when it gets to about two inches thick it cracks and breaks off in sheets about the size of a pickup truck that fly through the air and smash themselves to bits against the other buildings, or on the sidewalk below.

yikes. sounds like an adventurous living experience.

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Editor, have you seen the former Our Lady of the Angels School (3814 West Iowa Street)?

The school (closed in 1999) is infamous for the Our Lady of the Angels School Fire, which ruined the first OLA building (formerly at 909 North Avers Avenue) and killed 92 elementary and middle school students and 3 BVM teaching nuns. The rebuilt school opened in 1960.

The former OLA school is now the home for the Galapagos Charter School.

Edited by VicMan
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Editor, have you seen the former Our Lady of the Angels School (3814 West Iowa Street)?

The school (closed in 1999) is infamous for the Our Lady of the Angels School Fire, which ruined the first OLA building (formerly at 909 North Avers Avenue) and killed 92 elementary and middle school students and 3 BVM teaching nuns. The rebuilt school opened in 1960.

The former OLA school is now the home for the Galapagos Charter School.

I haven't been to the far west side much, especially the Humboldt Park neighborhood. There a bus (#66) about two blocks from me that will take me right to the school, so maybe I'll take a trip sometime.

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I've always wanted to visit the city mostly to tour the historical areas. I want to witness the area where they say some of the mansions of the rich people of the time still exist? Is this the Mile High something or the other?

Anyway thats what I lust for "In Old Chicago". That reminds me! I want to see all of the relics saved from the big fire and maybe pet Mrs. O'Leary's poor innocent cow that took the bad wrap for starting that fire so many moons ago. :P

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I've always wanted to visit the city mostly to tour the historical areas. I want to witness the area where they say some of the mansions of the rich people of the time still exist? Is this the Mile High something or the other?

Anyway thats what I lust for "In Old Chicago". That reminds me! I want to see all of the relics saved from the big fire and maybe pet Mrs. O'Leary's poor innocent cow that took the bad wrap for starting that fire so many moons ago. :P

The mansions are still there, tucked inbetween the skyscrapers. Some in the Near North neighborhood have been converted to consulates and lawyers offices, but there is a large neighborhood where they still exist as they did at the turn of the last century. The area is called Gold Coast, it's just north of the end of the Magnificent Mile.

There's one for sale a couple of blocks from me. It's a three-story walk-up. Reminds me of a large Brooklyn brownstone. Asking price is $24 million.

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There's one for sale a couple of blocks from me. It's a three-story walk-up. Reminds me of a large Brooklyn brownstone. Asking price is $24 million.

I bet they'll take $23 five. ;) .

Seeing those pics of Chicago.........wow. Forget how sort of close we are in population, Chicago's construction level is in another universe, as far as residential quantity and height anyway. It would be interesting to see how we would compare if total stories were added up, since I'm guessing building tall is not as much of a necessity here as it is in Chicago.

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The mansions are still there, tucked inbetween the skyscrapers. Some in the Near North neighborhood have been converted to consulates and lawyers offices, but there is a large neighborhood where they still exist as they did at the turn of the last century. The area is called Gold Coast, it's just north of the end of the Magnificent Mile.

There's one for sale a couple of blocks from me. It's a three-story walk-up. Reminds me of a large Brooklyn brownstone. Asking price is $24 million.

Finding a large mansion inside the loop or near downtown Chicago is like finding a needle in a haystack! I have lived there before and mansions in those areas are considered three level freestanding townhomes with yards or penthouse condo's! Basically the stuff that Houstonians will consider cookie cutter townhomes or as not having enough space is common place in many areas of Chicago. Why is this so? Mostly b/c It's very urban and heavily populated in those areas! Not to mentioned a ton of Mixed use projects everwhere. However, their architechure tastes within the downtown areas are far beyond anything houston will have. When looking for Mansions in chicago, you will find a small amount of eclectic homes, but in

Chicago (mainly, b/c of Cold Weather) it seems that the inside is what matters the most :rolleyes: ! Comparing downtown Houston to any other city besides L.A. is unfair. That's like comparing a Chicago Winter to a Houston Winter, there is no basis. IF you want large mansions with tile roofing and impeccable landscaping, you should go to warm weather places that aren't too urban.

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Finding a large mansion inside the loop or near downtown Chicago is like finding a needle in a haystack! I have lived there before and mansions in those areas are considered three level freestanding townhomes with yards or penthouse condo's! Basically the stuff that Houstonians will consider cookie cutter townhomes or as not having enough space is common place in many areas of Chicago. Why is this so? Mostly b/c It's very urban and heavily populated in those areas! Not to mentioned a ton of Mixed use projects everwhere. However, their architechure tastes within the downtown areas are far beyond anything houston will have. When looking for Mansions in chicago, you will find a small amount of eclectic homes, but in Chicago (mainly, b/c of Cold Weather) it seems that the inside is what matters the most :rolleyes: ! Comparing downtown Houston to any other city besides L.A. is unfair. That's like comparing a Chicago Winter to a Houston Winter, there is no basis. IF you want large mansions with tile roofing and impeccable landscaping, you should go to warm weather places that aren't too urban.
There are a few real mansions in downtown that are houses, not townhomes. The Ukranian consulate comes to mind, and a lawyer's office near the new Canyon Ranch tower. There's a few others in that area of River North. WLS-TV did a big piece about them a few months ago. I'll have to take my camera over there some time to snap a few.As for the Loop, no there aren't any mansions there. But there IS an old barn from the 1800's hidden down an alley. I took a picture of it once. There's also a cobbled cattle path leading off of LaSalle Street that's protected by an old deed restriction from the early 1800's. The skyscrapers had to build over it, but still preserve it.What part of Chicago did you live in?
I bet they'll take $23 five. ;) .Seeing those pics of Chicago.........wow. Forget how sort of close we are in population, Chicago's construction level is in another universe, as far as residential quantity and height anyway. It would be interesting to see how we would compare if total stories were added up, since I'm guessing building tall is not as much of a necessity here as it is in Chicago.
I think a lot of it is the different transportation cultures. In Houston you can build a skyscraper anywhere (Williams Tower comes to mind) and people will drive to it. In Chicago, you build it near the other skyscrapers to take advantage of the ammenities offered by the other towers. Also, property values increase with proximity to the lake so you end up with all of the towers bunched up along the shoreline which creates a great skyline.I work with a group of about 30 people each day. Of those, probably 6 (including myself) are in families that have no car. That's 20%. The CTA moves 1.6 million people each day (plus Pace, plus Metra). Imagine if 1.6 million people in Houston tried to take public transportation each day.
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Thanks for the pictures Editor. Chicago just keeps getting prettier. The City of Chicago takes pride in itself, and it shows. I have a webcam of South Michigan Avenue, and when bums hang out on the street, they don't stay there long because the police will move them along. Individual street cleaners are highly visible and that is in addition to the street cleanup trucks. Keeps the trash and the beggars at bay. Considering the very harsh winters, I believe that Chicago does a great job with caring for itself. Houston could do this too.

Edited by moni
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Thanks for the pictures Editor. Chicago just keeps getting prettier. The City of Chicago takes pride in itself, and it shows. I have a webcam of South Michigan Avenue, and when bums hang out on the street, they don't stay there long because the police will move them along. Individual street cleaners are highly visible and that is in addition to the street cleanup trucks. Keeps the trash and the beggars at bay. Considering the very harsh winters, I believe that Chicago does a great job with caring for itself. Houston could do this too.

Chicago has the advantage of having two or three levels of underground streets in which to sweep the homeless so they're out of sight of the regular people. On a cold night there are great piles of them on Lower Columbus, Middle Wacker, and Lower East South Water under the vents from the Hyatt and Swissotels. I used to walk past them on my way home. The local shelters always send out buses offering to pick them up and give them hot food and a warm place to stay, but there's always about 50 or 60 who prefer to make a dogpile to get through the night.

Can you imagine if Houston had an underground? What would that smell like after a few gullywashers and 100-degree weeks? I think the homeless would get kicked out by the roaches.

You're right about the trash -- there are constantly people sweeping and emptying the garbage cans. Streets and Sanitation does a really good job. And builidng owners are required to keep their sidewalks clean -- meaning power-washed with soap and scrubbers in some districts at least once a week. Of course, there are always scungy neighborhoods, but I've found that even the crappy parts of the city get a surprising amount of attention from Streets and San.

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I happened to be looking out my window today (I like to stare at the clouds a lot), and I noticed that I can see one of the mansions hemmed in by skyscrapers I was thinking about, so I took a snap. View it full-size for the full impact. I'll try to look it up online to see what the property is worth. I guessing lots.

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I found it on the Cook County Assessors web site. It says the building has an "assessed value" of around $932,197. I'm not a real estate person, so I'm not sure how assessed value relates to actual value. The same pages show that the condos in the neighboring buildings which go for $500,000 on the open market have an "assessed value" of around $21,000 so it's apparent that what you're assessed isn't exactly what it's worth.

The brown and black skyscraper to the right of the builidng in question is listed as having an assessed value of $8,899,999. I wonder if one more dollar pushes it into a different bracket.

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There are a few real mansions in downtown that are houses, not townhomes. The Ukranian consulate comes to mind, and a lawyer's office near the new Canyon Ranch tower. There's a few others in that area of River North. WLS-TV did a big piece about them a few months ago. I'll have to take my camera over there some time to snap a few.As for the Loop, no there aren't any mansions there. But there IS an old barn from the 1800's hidden down an alley. I took a picture of it once. There's also a cobbled cattle path leading off of LaSalle Street that's protected by an old deed restriction from the early 1800's. The skyscrapers had to build over it, but still preserve it.What part of Chicago did you live in?I think a lot of it is the different transportation cultures. In Houston you can build a skyscraper anywhere (Williams Tower comes to mind) and people will drive to it. In Chicago, you build it near the other skyscrapers to take advantage of the ammenities offered by the other towers. Also, property values increase with proximity to the lake so you end up with all of the towers bunched up along the shoreline which creates a great skyline.I work with a group of about 30 people each day. Of those, probably 6 (including myself) are in families that have no car. That's 20%. The CTA moves 1.6 million people each day (plus Pace, plus Metra). Imagine if 1.6 million people in Houston tried to take public transportation each day.

Lived in Lincoln Park ( Clark and Fullerton) and Old Town area (Division and wells)

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Lived in Lincoln Park ( Clark and Fullerton) and Old Town area (Division and wells)

Good choices. A lot of people are flocking into the Lakeview (now sometimes called "Rapeview") neighborhood these days, and I really don't understand why. Of the six people we've hired at my job this year one moved to Skokie and the rest to Lakeview.

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I happened to be looking out my window today (I like to stare at the clouds a lot), and I noticed that I can see one of the mansions hemmed in by skyscrapers I was thinking about, so I took a snap. View it full-size for the full impact. I'll try to look it up online to see what the property is worth. I guessing lots.

DSC00335.jpg

So this is your view? Unbelievable!

I know this may be a little personal, but may I ask what rent goes for in your building with a similar view?

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I happened to be looking out my window today (I like to stare at the clouds a lot), and I noticed that I can see one of the mansions hemmed in by skyscrapers I was thinking about, so I took a snap. View it full-size for the full impact. I'll try to look it up online to see what the property is worth. I guessing lots.

This photo makes DT Houston look like Hooterville. Arnold the Pig would be drowned out!

PBS has done fantastic stories on Chicago and its very beginnings. I never get tired of seeing the rerun especially when they do the number on the 1893 World's Fair. You have to see this. :blush:

http://members.cox.net/academia/cassatt8.html

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I happened to be looking out my window today (I like to stare at the clouds a lot), and I noticed that I can see one of the mansions hemmed in by skyscrapers I was thinking about, so I took a snap. View it full-size for the full impact. I'll try to look it up online to see what the property is worth. I guessing lots.

DSC00335.jpg

What a beautiful view!

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So this is your view? Unbelievable!

I know this may be a little personal, but may I ask what rent goes for in your building with a similar view?

It's a very competitive market. I pay 20% less for this place than I did at Dakota Lofts in Houston.

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I love Chicago. Gorgeous city. A lot like Houston, but with an actual winter, and just as miserable in the summer.I almost moved there a few years ago for a job. Had a nice place in the Dearborn building on the southside set up for me.Stayed in the hotel right there next to the NBC building as well. Nice. It has a Ditka's in the lobby. Arrived on a 56 degree December morning. I was really looking forward to snow.

I happened to be looking out my window today (I like to stare at the clouds a lot), and I noticed that I can see one of the mansions hemmed in by skyscrapers I was thinking about, so I took a snap. View it full-size for the full impact. I'll try to look it up online to see what the property is worth. I guessing lots.DSC00335.jpg
Any clue what developer made the very brave move of building a building with a giant white arrow on the side? Any clue on the architect?
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Any clue what developer made the very brave move of building a building with a giant white arrow on the side? Any clue on the architect?

Funny. Until about two weeks ago there was a big "Hotel Cass" sign painted on the side of that building. It was a flophouse with the unfortunate address of "666 North State Street." It's not being converted into yet another boutique hotel. We'll see if they petition for a different address.

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