Is the South Loop About to Get Transformed Forever? 2 Starchitects Unveil New High Rises

This is a very busy week for new construction announcements with seemingly at least a half a dozen GreenZone building announcements made this week.

But none were more momentous than the two high rise projects announced for the South Loop.

The first building is a Rafael Vinoly designed 76-story tower at 113 E. Roosevelt that may be one or possibly two towers anchoring the south end of Grant Park at Roosevelt and Michigan (see below for renderings). There is a 2-acre parcel available there.

113 E Roosevelt proposed South Loop Towers Sep 24, 2015

From Curbed:

The project would be Crescent Heights’ first new construction project for Chicago, and the aim would be to “anchor the south end of Grant Park.” The almost modular looking project would be built in phases and could ultimately produce nearly 800 new apartments for the area. Because of the sheer scale of the development, the plan would include apartments of varying sizes, floor plans and prices. According to Viñoly, the plan would present a number of options for folks in different price ranges and needs, stating that the project is “not just an architectural idea, but an urban design idea.”

The second tower is Helmut Jahn’s 86-story condo/apartment building at 1000 S. Michigan Avenue that would have 506 residences and 598 parking spaces.

The rendering below is from JAHN- with the one on the left including the newly announced Vinoly towers.

1000 s michigan helmut jahn proposed building Sep 24, 2015

From Dennis Rodkin at Crain’s:

The exterior would be mostly clad in glass, with two vertical “zippers” running up the Michigan Avenue facade that contain inset, glass-railed balconies.

The developer’s proposal says the building would be 993 feet tall but shows a cap over the rooftop terrace that would reach 1,030 feet. At that height, the building would rank as Chicago’s fifth-tallest, after the Willis, Trump, Aon and Hancock towers. However, the planned Vista tower by Jeanne Gang is currently designed to be 64 feet taller Jahn’s.

What are your thoughts on the possibility of several new mega-high rises in the South Loop?

These are not your run-of-the-mill apartment building announcements.

40 Days on the Market for this 2-Bedroom West Loop Loft: 17 N. Loomis

17 N Loomis

This 2-bedroom authentic loft in the Heartbreak Lofts at 17 N. Loomis came on the market in August 2015.

It is bank owned. It took the bank 7 years to put this property back on the market.

We last chattered about it in August 2015. See our chatter here.

If you recall, this is a northeast corner loft with 12 foot concrete ceiling and amazing industrial windows along both sides of the loft.

It has hardwood floors and some exposed brick.

The master bedroom is fully enclosed.

The kitchen has wood cabinets, stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops.

The loft has all the other features buyers look for including washer/dryer in the unit, central air and garage parking included.

Back in August, I thought this might sell quickly given the dearth of inventory, especially for large authentic lofts, in the West Loop.

The West Loop also continues to be one of the hottest neighborhoods in the city due to the influx of technology companies in the Fulton Market area.

This loft has had 3 price reductions in the last 40 days.

Why isn’t this selling?

Kevin Maloney at Exclusive Real Estate Limited has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #1F: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in May 2001 for $297,500
  • Sold in September 2003 for $315,000
  • Lis pendens filed in March 2008
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in May 2010
  • Bank owned in May 2015
  • Originally listed in August 2015 for $469,000 (includes garage parking)
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed at $454,000 (includes garage parking)
  • Assessments of $388 a month (includes exterior maintenance and snow removal)
  • Taxes of $4202
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 18×13
  • Bedroom #2: 13×10

Still Trying to Sell This River North 1-Bedroom Penthouse: 340 W. Superior

340 w superior

This 1-bedroom penthouse unit at 340 W. Superior in River North recently came on the market.

But we’ve chattered about it twice before. The last time was in June 2015 when it had been reduced. See our chatter here.

If you recall, it is a “true” penthouse with a 31×12 private terrace that looks west with “sunset and city views.”

One of the old listings said the apartment was “conceived by renowned designer William Eubanks” and has 10 foot ceilings with crown molding.

The kitchen has light cabinets (white?) with granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.

The bathrooms are marble.

It has the other features buyers look for including central air, washer/dryer in the unit and garage parking.

In September 2014, it was listed for $475,000 plus $35,000 for the parking.

A year later, it has come on the market reduced by $80,000 at $400,000 plus $30,000 for the parking.

Why isn’t this selling?

Nancy Thomas at Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff still has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #PH5: 1 bedroom, 1.5 baths, 1016 square feet

  • Sold in October 2002 for $357,500
  • Was listed in September 2014 for $475,000 plus $35,000 for the parking
  • Re-listed in April 2014 for $445,000 plus $30,000 for the parking
  • Reduced
  • Re-listed in September 2015 for $400,000 plus $30,000 for the parking
  • Assessments are the same-  $861 a month (includes heat, a/c, gas, doorman, cable, water, exterior maintenance, snow removal, scavenger)
  • Taxes are now $8327 (they were $8151)
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom: 13×11

A Rare South Loop Single Family Home is On the Market: 1417 S. Federal

1417 s federal

This 4-bedroom single family home at 1417 S. Federal in Dearborn Park II in the South Loop came on the market in April 2015.

This house is rare as there aren’t many single family homes in the South Loop.

This one was built in 1993 by Booth Hansen on a 36×105 lot.

It has a private 18×37 backyard as well as a common park area that is shared by a few other single family homes and a group of townhouses.

There is a $600 annual fee to maintain those common areas.

This is part of the park behind the houses/townhouses. It is fenced and gorgeous.

Dearborn Park II park

This house has the layout desired by buyers with all 4 of the bedrooms on the second floor.

It has bay windows and 5 skylights along with a rare 2-car attached garage (i.e. not on the alley- it’s accessible from the street) and parking on the parking pad.

The kitchen has white cabinets.

The master suite has 2 walk-in closets.

This house was already under contract once.

Since April, it has been reduced $175,000.

At $1.325 million, is it priced to sell?

Cynthia Bauer at Re/Max Premier Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

1417 S. Federal: 4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in April 1993 for $498,000
  • Originally listed in July 2015 for $1.5 million
  • Reduced several times
  • Under contract- but now re-listed
  • Currently listed at $1.325 million
  • Taxes of $12167
  • $600 annual fee for common areas
  • Central Air
  • 2-car attached garage
  • Bedroom #1: 16×19 (2nd floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 18×12 (2nd floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 14×9 (2nd floor)
  • Bedroom #4: 17×12 (2nd floor)
  • Family room: 16×27 (basement)

 

Love Vintage Built-in Bookshelves? A 2-Bedroom in 3520 N. Lake Shore Drive in Lakeview

3520-n-lake-shore-drive-approved

This vintage 2-bedroom at 3520 N. Lake Shore Drive in Lakeview came on the market in July 2015.

3520 was built in 1924 and has 166 units.

This corner unit is on the third floor with views of the trees and the Lake beyond.

It has its original moldings and the high ceilings and big room sizes that were common in the 1920s.

It even has a separate dining room, complete with a wall of built-in bookshelves.

The kitchen is “newer” with stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops.

The bathroom is a Jack-n-Jill and the listing says its been updated.

This unit has a washer/dryer in the unit but there’s no central air or parking.

It has already been under contract once and was recently reduced $5,000.

Will this go under contract again quickly?

Crystal Riley at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #3N: 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, 1400 square feet

  • Sold in November 1991 for $127,500
  • Sold in August 1995 for $125,000
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed
  • Distress sale in May 2012 for $121,000
  • Sold in May 2013 for $245,000
  • Originally listed in July 2015 for $280,000
  • Was under contract
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed at $275,000
  • Assessments of $645 a month (includes heat, cable, gas)
  • Taxes of $3714
  • No central air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • No parking
  • Bedroom #1: 14×12
  • Bedroom #2: 14×11
  • Living room: 23×14
  • Dining room: 14×13
  • Kitchen: 15×9

Revisiting the Belgravia Conversion at 2300 N. Commonwealth in Lincoln Park

2300 n commonwealth

This 2-bedroom at 2300 N. Commonwealth in Lincoln Park came on the market in August 2015.

This building was a Belgravia conversion at the height of the housing bubble in 2006.

It has 72 units and a heated parking garage.

This unit is a southwest corner unit with hardwood floors throughout.

It has an upgraded maple kitchen with GE stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops.

The unit only has 1 bathroom but it is white Carrera marble.

This property has all the other features buyers look for including central air and washer/dryer in the unit.

It has come on the market just $7,000 under the 2006 top of the market price.

Is now the time for the original owners in this building to sell and get out?

Natasha Motev at Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #6B: 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, no square footage listed

  • Sold in November 2006 for $407,000
  • Currently listed at $399,900 (includes the parking)
  • Assessment of $348 a month (includes heat, a/c, gas, cable, snow removal, exterior maintenance)
  • Taxes of $4589
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 17×12
  • Bedroom #2: 12×12

Market Conditions: August Sales Rose 6.3% But Harder YOY Comps Are Coming

Skyline with Sears Tower Nov 2010

As expected, Chicago August home sales rose 6.3% compared to August of last year.

From the Illinois Association of Realtors:

The city of Chicago saw sales of 2,629 homes in August 2015, up 6.3 percent from last year when 2,474 homes were sold. The median price of a home in Chicago was $270,000, up 0.2 percent over August 2014 when the median price was $269,500.

August Sales since 2007:

  • August 2007: 2923 sales
  • August 2008: 2078 sales
  • August 2009: 1927 sales
  • August 2010: 1486 sales
  • August 2011: 1787 sales
  • August 2012: 2209 sales
  • August 2013: 2850 sales
  • August 2014: 2414 sales
  • August 2015: 2629 sales

“It’s taking a phenomenally short time to sell a home in the city of Chicago,” said Hugh Rider, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and co-president of Realty and Mortgage Co. in Chicago. “Buyers have a short window to swoop in and make an offer because there are so many others looking for properties even this late into the selling season.”

Interestingly, this was the first time I can recall the IAR actually breaking out the foreclosure sales prices versus the non-distressed sales prices in Chicago.

The median price of non-distressed properties was nearly unchanged. Of course, the median is just whatever mix is selling at that particular time and doesn’t tell you a whole heck of a lot.

I wonder why they decided to comment on it this time?

“Sales returned to a more modest long-term annual growth rate in August while prices continued to increase,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL) at the University of Illinois. “Of interest in Chicago was the fact that the median price of non-foreclosed properties remained virtually unchanged while the median price for foreclosed properties increased, contributing to the modest overall price increase.  From our data, the percentage of distressed sales among the total sales for the Chicago PMSA was 13.5 percent in August.  However, the good news is that it was the lowest August reading since 2009 and much lower than the peak (23.7 percent) in 2010.”

August median price since 2007:

  • August 2007: $305,000
  • August 2008: $297,500
  • August 2009: $229,900
  • August 2010: $200,000
  • August 2011: $192,500
  • August 2012: $200,000
  • August 2013: $245,000
  • August 2014: $270,000
  • August 2015: $270,000

The next few months we’ll start to see more difficult year over year comps. It was late in 2014 that the market started heating up again.

All the agents are complaining about low housing inventories.

Are low inventories hurting sales this fall?

Illinois home sales and median prices rise again in August [Illinois Association of Realtors, September 21, 2015]

Affordable Lake Shore Drive: A 2-Bedroom at 680 N. Lake Shore Drive in Streeterville

680 n lake shore drive

This 2-bedroom in 680 N. Lake Shore Drive in Streeterville just came on the market.

It is on the second floor and doesn’t have lake views, but the 2nd and 16th floors in this building have extra high ceilings measuring 11 feet, 6 inches.

The unit has bamboo floors and a newer kitchen with Silestone counter tops, Miele and Bosch appliances and a breakfast bar.

The listing says the second bedroom is “interior” which I gather to mean that it has no windows. It does have an attached half bath, however.

There’s side-by-side laundry, central air and garage parking is available for $50,000.

680 N. Lake Shore Drive is a full amenity building with a 24-hour doorman, pool, exercise room and a host of day-to-day amenities like a gourmet grocer, a pharmacy, a hardware store, a coffee shop and a dry cleaners.

You never have to leave.

Is this an affordable option for those looking to live on the lake?

Jennifer Ames at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #208: 2 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, 1500 square feet

  • Sold in December 2008 for $195,000
  • Sold in March 2011 for $440,000
  • Currently listed for $389,500 (plus $50,000 for deeded parking)
  • Assessment of $833 a month (includes doorman, cable, water, pool, snow removal, exterior maintenance)
  • Taxes of $6393
  • Central Air
  • Side-by-side washer/dryer
  • Bedroom #1: 12×16
  • Bedroom #2: 10×10
  • Laundry room: 6×11

2-Bedroom Duplex Up Loft Returns to Try Again: 1137 N. Wood in the East Village

1137-n-wood-approved

This 2-bedroom duplex-up loft at 1137 N. Wood in the East Village recently came on the market.

But most of you will remember it from earlier this summer because we chattered about it as a microcosm of the hot Chicago housing market. See the chatter here.

Ironically, it didn’t sell in the first go-around and was withdrawn from the market but has now come back on at a lower price point.

If you recall it has 17 foot ceilings with exposed brick.

The main level has dark ebony floors and the kitchen has white cabinets, stainless steel appliances and black granite countertops.

One bedroom is located on the main floor, and has windows and full walls, while the second bedroom is duplex-up and has a 30×9 deck.

The upstairs bedroom has carpet.

The loft has the other features buyers look for including central air, washer/dryer in the unit and it includes garage parking.

This property is located near the hot restaurants/shops on Division and is within a short walking distance to the Blue Line el stop.

Originally listed for $500,000 in July, it has been reduced and is now listed at $480,000.

Will this reduction get the deal done?

Sophia Klopas at Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff still has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2B: 2 bedroom, 2 bath, duplex up, no square footage listed

  • Sold in May 2006 for $415,000
  • Originally listed in July 2015 for $500,000
  • Withdrawn in August 2015
  • Recently re-listed for $480,000
  • Assessments of $310 a month (includes water, snow removal, exterior maintenance)
  • The listing says there is $12,000 in building reserves. There are 16 units in the building. Is this enough for a building of this size? It also says no specials are planned.
  • Taxes of $5120
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Garage parking included
  • Bedroom #1: 17×14 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 14×10 (first floor)

Re-Selling 2 Months Later in the South Loop: A 1-Bedroom Loft at 1727 S. Indiana

1727 s prairie

This 1-bedroom loft in the Prairie District Lofts at 1727 S. Indiana in the South Loop came on the market in August 2015.

This is a brick and timber loft with other authentic features including a large metal door along one wall.

The bedroom, however, has no windows or a door but is separated by a wall from the rest of the unit.

The kitchen has granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.

The loft has a balcony and a fireplace.

It has the other features buyers look for, including central air, washer/dryer in the unit and parking is available to rent in the building’s lot for what looks like $150 a month (according to other listings currently on the market in the building.)

But if it looks familiar, that’s because it had previously already been on the market in 2015 and sold in June.

You can see that listing here.

Originally listed for $39,000 more than the sales price just 2 months ago, it has been reduced once.

As rents continue to soar in the South Loop, and with buying now cheaper than renting, and with inventories remaining low, will this loft get the premium over its prior sale?

Edouard Pierre at Century 21 has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #324: 1 bedroom, 1 bath, 821 square feet

  • Sold in March 2008 for $215,000
  • Sold in June 2015 for $200,000
  • Originally listed in August 2015 for $239,000
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed at $237,900
  • Assessments of $352 a month
  • Taxes of $2243
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Parking is available for rent for around $150 a month
  • Bedroom: 9×10