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salmdesign
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I am sitting here rolling my eyes at the enormous cost. $40-45 million. FOR A BIKE OVERPASS, PEOPLE. Yes, something is needed, but $45 MILLION? Wouldn't that much money build two or three new libraries? Perhaps refurbish a few schools? $45 million sounds like $35 million more than what this should really cost. Must the city use the same alleged mafia/Daley family/connected contractors they award every public works project to that over-inflates the price of everything?
I don't understand Friedman Properties. Either they're for historic preservation and first class commercial office development, or they're building monstrous parking garages all over downtown Chicago--the kind of parking garages that you'd expect in Dallas, Houston or Miami. Does a hotel that has 400 rooms need a parking structure that holds 600 cars? Does a renovation of a historic office building entitle the developer to build a 12-level, 800-stall garage located almost across the street? For Friedman Properties, there's always a good/bad side to most of their developments. What's worse, their parking garages rob neighborhoods of beauty, as with Friedman's mega-garage at Clark and Lake--a garage so ugly and massive as to defy the wonderful Kohn Pederson Fox and Murphy/Jahn structures near it.
There are three--count them!--THREE full-size Walgreens stores within a four-block radius of the Carson building already. What kind of building are they striving for here? Is there going to be some gigantic atria or re-developed entrance to entice people to schlep up four flights of escalators just to get a bottle of aspirin? BK: These are Walgreens offices, not Walgreens stores.
We now have our version of the Crescent Center in Dallas, though Johnson would've badgered the developer into making sure there were funds to finish the roof the way the original plans and promotional literature were intended.
I wonder if there was similar outrage now as back in 1978 when the owners of the World Trade Center in NY added the huge telecommunications mast in the center of the north tower? There have been a lot of goofy or just plain ugly things that Chicago building and land owners are allowed to do: change building names of iconic or historic structures; slap gargantuan, garishly-colored "RENT HERE NOW," "CONDOS FOR SALE," vinyl signage on the tops and sides of buildings that skirt billboard rules and can be seen for miles; build above-ground Herculean 1500-stall parking garages on prime real estate in the Loop and Mag Mile neighborhoods. Chicago has a history of desperate building owners looking for a quick buck. Unfortunately, the white pimple on the Aon Center's head looks like it's here to stay.