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Cityscapes 2012-07-30 14:14:50
Time is the enemy of old buildings, breaking them down just as it breaks people down. But time can save them as well as provide the attractive patina of age. Time -- or, more accurately, the passage of time -- can upend the economic assumptions on which real estate deals are built. It can allow historic preservationists to drum up popular …


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Cityscapes 2012-07-26 07:34:22
When Target announced last year that it would open a store in architect Louis Sullivan's former Carson Pirie Scott & Co. building in Chicago?s Loop, cynics reacted as though the Mona Lisa was being handed over to Snooki and the barbarians of "Jersey Shore." What would the discount retailer do, they wondered -- plaster its red bull's-eye logo all over the …


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Cityscapes 2012-07-17 14:55:05
From tomorrow's print edition Does a good cause inevitably lead to good architecture? It's a touchy subject, especially when you're taking the measure of a building, like the new Ronald McDonald House in Chicago, which provides convenient, caring lodging for families that have a child in the hospital. Criticize anything in such building and you're bound to sound insensitive, as if …


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Cityscapes 2012-07-10 08:49:25
Mayor Rahm Emanuel's administration is throwing its weight behind a proposal to rehab the historic Roosevelt Apartments in the 4600 block of South Michigan Avenue. The city's Community Development Commission votes today (Tuesday) on a plan to provide up to $25 milllion in tax-increment financing to developers who want to turn the vacant complex into 331 units of housing for seniors and families. The project's total …


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Cityscapes 2012-07-05 08:13:09
Want to know why there's an apartment building boomlet in Chicago? It's as easy as Economics 101: Supply is low and demand is high, so rents and the superstructures of new high-rises are climbing here, as they are nationwide. Reuters reports.  


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Cityscapes 2012-05-15 08:17:55
I'm back from a quick trip to Philadelphia, where I got a very brief nighttime look at the new Barnes Foundation building by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, who have also designed the soon-to-be-completed Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago. After its controversial move from Philadelphia's Main Line suburbs to the city's Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the Barnes opens its art …


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Cityscapes 2012-05-09 16:46:05
Consider it the latest step on the way to the Bloomingdale Trail and Park. Under a plan introduced Wednesday to the City Council by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Chicago's transportation department will buy a 2.7-mile railroad embankment on the Northwest Side from the Canadian Pacific Railroad. The price: $1. Naturally, that's not all. A news release says the city will also kick in "$105,000 in administrtive fees associated …


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Cityscapes 2012-04-09 19:29:01
From chicagotribune.com By Carolyn Shropshire Tribune reporter Block 37, the beleaguered downtown shopping mall, was purchased by CIM Group, a Los Angeles-based real estate fund for an undisclosed price, the company confirmed Monday.The sale could pave the way for the high profile four-level complex, which is bordered by State, Randolph, Dearborn and Washington streets, to move forward after nearly three …


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Cityscapes 2012-04-03 11:57:37
The Art Institute of Chicago today named Karen Kice, a researcher, writer and curator in the fields of architecture and urbanism, to the post of assistant curator in the Department of Architecture and Design. The museum's news release follows on the jump: The Art Institute of Chicago announced today the appointment of Karen Kice to the position of Neville Bryan Assistant Curator, Department of Architecture …


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Cityscapes 2012-04-02 08:42:27
True, it's a stretch, but there's a Chicago architectural angle to tonight's NCAA men's basketball championship game. It involves Kentucky's star forward Anthony Davis, who is invariably identified as a product of Chicago high schools. What high school, I wondered? Must be Simeon or some other basketball powerhouse. A little Web searching turned up this surprising fact: Davis attended Perspectives Charter School, the award-winning Near …


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Cityscapes 2012-03-25 22:01:00
Cityscapes is on spring break. Postings will resume Monday, April 2.


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Cityscapes 2012-03-20 12:53:04
Architect Frank Gehry said today that he's open to making changes in his controversial proposal for the Eisenhower Memorial in Washington, the Associated Press reports.  Gehry was speaking at a Congressional hearing at which Susan Eisenhower, granddaughter of the former president, criticized the memorial's design, saying it was overblown and would be difficult to maintain, according to a Reuters account.  Just how far Gehry …


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Cityscapes 2012-03-08 19:54:53
City officials Thursday night offered new concepts for the long-delayed Bloomingdale Trail, a proposed park and multiuse path of nearly three miles that would be built atop a dormant elevated railroad line on the city?s Northwest Side. The park and path would run through the neighborhoods of Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Wicker Park and Bucktown. The project?s first phase would cost about $46 …


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Cityscapes 2012-03-08 09:38:37
City officials on Thursday night will make public a long-range "framework plan" for the proposed Bloomingdale Trail as well as cost estimates for the project, which seeks to turn a dormant Northwest Side railroad line into a linear park and bike trail. The presentation will be made from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Yates Elementary School, 1839 N. Richmond St. It will …


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Cityscapes 2012-03-07 14:59:48
Long before he left office, former Mayor Richard M. Daley was widely viewed as friend of good design?a dictator, perhaps, but more often than not, an enlightened one. Architects loved him as much as they feared him. Not so his successor?at least not yet. Last fall, for example, the Chicago Architecture Foundation mounted an exhibition of architects? visionary plans for remaking …


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Cityscapes 2012-03-06 12:15:34
Less than a week after Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced an "infrastructure trust" that will bankroll public works projects, the effort is getting help from another source--a big foundation that's giving nearly half a million dollars in grants to back development of a bus rapid transit system in Chicago. Here's the news release from the Chicago Department of Transportation: ROCKEFELLER FOUNDATION SUPPORTS CHICAGO'S BUS RAPID …


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Cityscapes 2012-02-23 09:26:40
Skyscraper junkies now have a new place on the Web to search for fun facts, read technical papers and settle arguments.  The Chicago-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat today unveiled "The Skyscraper Center," an interactive global database that it bills as as offering "detailed profiles and images on every completed building in the world taller than 200 meters," plus buildings in other stages of development. I …


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Cityscapes 2012-02-08 08:06:27
From today's print edition By Kate Thayer Tribune reporter As an architecture buff and lifelong resident of the Clearing neighborhood, Barbara Schreiber passes the corner of 63rd Street and Central Avenue and doesn't see a dangerous building ? she sees a historic neighborhood artifact. But she's worried she won't see it much longer. Schreiber and others in the neighborhood have started …


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Cityscapes 2012-02-07 08:06:46
Emporis, the global building database, is  out with a new list that ranks the world's ten largest shopping malls by gross leaseable area. The biggies, it turns out, are almost all in Asia. The Mall of America doesn't even make the list. The only North American mega-mall, according to Emporis, is the West  Edmonton Mall in Canada. Rank Name Location GLA* 1 New South China Mall …


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Cityscapes 2012-01-25 09:22:24
Back in November, I reported that Chicago's DeStefano Partners was splitting in two, with one part of the firm to focus on domestic projects and the other on international jobs. Now, the international side of the picture is getting clearer, thanks to a tip from Indianapolis architect Steve Herr.  Kerr just pointed me to a news release, published on the Web site of Inside Indiana Business, which …


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