CITY HALL — A massive mixed-use development that would bring Goose Island its first residential units in decades and a 300-key hotel is expected to get an initial OK from the city during Thursday’s Plan Commission meeting.
The proposal by the Vancouver-based Onni Group would bring 2,650 new residential units, 300 hotel rooms, commercial and retail space, 1,400 parking spaces and open space to 901 N. Halsted St. along the Chicago River in the 27th Ward.
Members of the Chicago Plan Commission during their 9 a.m. Thursday meeting are expected to consider the Goose Island development among proposals for thousands of new residential units in the city’s downtown area and a proposal to change development regulations in the Illinois Medical District for the first time since 1997.
Onni’s multi-year Goose Island development would leave the southern portion of the largely industrial island looking starkly different than it does today, with a Greyhound Bus maintenance building currently on the site. Onni bought the maintenance facility for $38 million in February 2019, the Tribune reported at the time.
The development, dubbed Halsted Pointe, is proposed to include five towers ranging from a 28-story hotel to a 65-story residential building. Three additional residential buildings would stand at 30, 45 and 46 stories. Four “activated mid-rise” buildings would be built next to the towers.
Chicago’s North Branch Framework Plan, approved by city leaders in 2017, allows homes to be built on Goose Island for the first time in decades.
Additionally, Halsted Pointe would offer 3.8 acres of “usable and thoughtfully designed open areas” including landscaping and new trees, according to the planning department presentation. Buildings in Halsted Pointe are designed to include landscaped decks, terraces and plazas to appeal to pedestrians.
Onni is also planning to prioritize open space along the river and bring more than 1,300 linear feet of publicly accessible Riverwalk to the development.
According to the proposal, Onni is planning to build on-site all of the 530 units of affordable housing required by the city’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance. The developer had previously cited the city’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance when they backed out of an initial deal to buy the bus facility for $50 million.
Halsted Pointe will be privately funded and will not receive any tax-increment financing benefits. The development will contribute $19.3 million to the city’s Neighborhood Opportunity Fund, $4.1 million to the Local Impact Fund and $2.4 million to the Citywide Adopt-A-Landmark.
Halsted Pointe is projected to bring with it 9,782 construction-related jobs.
Nearly 2,000 Residential Units Proposed For 42nd Ward
The plan commission is also set to consider a proposal (O2021-1954) by Jamal Properties to build a two-tower mixed-use development with 1,053 residential units and commercial space at 601 W. Monroe St. on the Near West Side in the 42nd Ward.
The developer is planning to build the development in two phases, beginning with a 535-foot tower with 537 residential units, 400 parking spaces and commercial space on the ground floor, according to a planning department presentation. A 465-foot tower with 516 residential units, 30 parking spaces and ground-floor commercial space would be built in the development’s second phase.
The site is currently used for surface parking, according to the presentation.
Since filing their initial planned development application in May, Jamal Properties used public feedback to add a public dog park, widened sidewalks along Des Plaines Street and made adjustments to reduce construction disruptions on traffic, according to the presentation.
Jamal Properties is proposing to build on-site 26 of the 105 affordable units required by the city’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance. The developer will pay a $14.8 million “in-lieu” fee for the remaining units.
Separately, the commission will consider a proposal (O2020-6237) from Chicago Condo Collection (C3) to build a mixed-use residential, commercial and hotel development at 525 S. Wabash Ave. in the 42nd Ward.
C3 is proposing the development to include a 24-story tower and a 36-story tower that will combine for 777 residential units, 405 hotel rooms, 41,000 square feet of amenity space and 151 parking spaces.
The development began as a three-tower proposal in August 2019, but the developer has since shifted to two taller towers, according to a presentation from the city’s planning department.
All 78 affordable housing units required under the city’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance would be built on site and would be affordable to householders earning up to 60 percent of the area median income, the presentation shows. The affordable units would comprise 39 studios, 26 one-bedrooms, six two-bedrooms and seven three-bedroom units, according to the presentation.
The $350 million development is projected to generate 400 construction jobs and 200 permanent jobs.
More Than 700 Housing Units Proposed For 2nd Ward
Plan Commissioners are also set to consider three separate proposals that would bring a total of 785 new residential units to the 2nd Ward on the Near North Side.
Quick’s LLC is proposing (O2021-2144) a two-phase development at 1120-1130 N. State St., beginning with a 345-foot-tall, 304-unit residential building, according to a presentation from the planning department. The residential tower would also include 10,000 square feet of commercial space and 132 parking spaces. The development’s second phase is set to include 21,700 square feet of commercial space.
The development would replace a two story, single-use retail development, according to the presentation.
Since the proposal was submitted in May, the developer has incorporated community feedback by lowering density, shortening the building and removing second-floor retail. The developer plans to build eight of the required 30 affordable units on-site and contribute a $4.1 million “in-lieu fee” for the remaining units.
A separate proposal (O2021-1968) from FRC Reality would bring a 39-story residential tower with 303 units, 3,698 square feet of commercial space and 124 parking spaces at 125 W. Maple St. According to a presentation from the planning department. The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral and a six-unit apartment building and coach house will remain at 1015 N. LaSalle St.
Since submitting its application in May, FRC Realty has incorporated public feedback by reducing density from 406 residential units to 303 units, dropped the building height by about 40 feet, increased setbacks and made safety improvements, according to the presentation.
FRC Realty plans to build on-site eight of the required 30 affordable units and pay $4.1 million in-lieu fee for the remaining units.
Vista Property Holdings is proposing (O2021-2001) to build a 21-story, 178-unit residential building with 7,530 square feet of ground floor commercial space and 53 parking spaces at 739-755 N. Wells St.
The developer is planning to build five of the required 18 affordable units on-site and pay a $2.4 million fee-in-lieu for the remaining units, according to a planning department presentation.
Illinois Medical District changes
A proposal (O2019-1502) from Ald. Walter Burnett (27th) and Ald. Jason Ervin (28th) would amend development regulations for the Illinois Medical District planned development bound by Congress Parkway, Ashland Avenue, Palina Street, 15th Street, Wood Street, 14th Street and Damen Avenue.
The change would mark the first time the Illinois Medical District planned development has been amended since 1997 and would “reflect current planning priorities and development patterns,” according to a presentation from the city’s planning department.
Changes would rezone the planned development from a C1-2 to C2-5 district, which would increase the maximum floor-to-area ratio and expand the permitted uses, according to the presentation. Other amendments would make the city’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance and minority and women hiring standards applicable to the medical district.
The 373-acre planned development area encompasses four major hospitals: Cook County, Rush, UIC and the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center. It also includes the University of Illinois Medical School and Hospital and several other institutional uses.
Currently, the area faces challenges of land-use regulations that limit development to mostly medical, institutional and educational development which do not support the “trend towards mixed-use development,” according to the presentation.
Additionally, officials said “vague development regulations” fail to address “specific development visions.” The current regulations support “suburban-style office development” with large setbacks and hefty parking requirements. And the area’s “outdated development regulations often require complex administrative relief processes,” according to the presentation.
Plan Commissioners are also expected to consider the following agenda items on Thursday:
- A proposal (O2021-1983) from The Michaels Development Company and DL3 Realty to build a 60-foot mixed-use multi-family residential building at 835-61 E. 63rd St. in Woodlawn in the 20th Ward. The development would include 56 residential units, two “live/work” units, retail space and 40 parking stalls, according to the agenda. Forty-one of the building’s units, or 70 percent, will be built as affordable with nine units each for households earning up to 30 percent and 50 percent of the area median income and 23 units for households earning up to 60 percent of the area median income, according to a planning department presentation.
- A proposal (SO2016-4798) from CMK Companies to build a 305-foot-tall residential building with 299 units and ground-floor commercial space at 1354-1408 S. Wabash Ave. on the Near South Side in the 3rd Ward. The proposal includes an interior “pocket park” with multiple points of access “to tie the park into the surrounding neighborhood,” according to a planning department presentation. The developer is planning to build on-site eight of the required 30 affordable housing units and pay a $4.1 million fee in-lieu of the remaining 22 units, according to the presentation.
- A proposal (O2021-2456) from DAC Development to build a 19-story building with 288 residential units and 4,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space at 1201 W. Washington Blvd. on the Near West Side in the 27th Ward. The developer plans to build on-site all 58 of the affordable units required by the site’s location in the Affordable Requirements Ordinance Near North Pilot Area, according to a planning department presentation. Half the units will be targeted to households earning up to 60 percent of the area median income, and half will be targeted to households earning up to 100 percent of the area median income, according to the presentation.
- A proposal (O2020-4542) by Whitecap Lofts to rehab the vacant building at 1819 N. Major Ave. in the Armitage Industrial Corridor in the 29th Ward to make way for commercial and industrial tenants to move in. The developer is planning to do “significant” interior and exterior rehab work and add an interior 139-space ground-floor parking garage, according to a planning department presentation. The seven-story, 338,397-square-foot building was home to the White Cap Co. from 1932 to the early 2000s and has been vacant for more than 10 years, according to the presentation. The planning department recommends approval of the development which “will facilitate investment to increase the economic health and availability of jobs in the corridor” and “support occupancy trends showing growth in industrial office uses,” according to the presentation.
- A proposal by Harold Hayes and Robert Gecht to build a 32-unit apartment building at 4901 N. Paulina St. in the 47th Ward. The developers separately filed an application (O2021-3111) to amend the surrounding planned development so their apartments plan can move forward.
- A proposal from the Chicago Department of Transportation to rebuild and rehabilitate four bridges in the Montrose Harbor area in the 46th Ward. Two of the bridges are located on Simonds Drive, one is on Wilson Drive and one is on Montrose Avenue. According to a presentation from the city’s Department of Planning and Development, the “modernized” bridges will be accessible to people with disabilities.
- A proposal from the Chicago Park District to restore the North Pond Nature Sanctuary at 2610 N. Canon Dr. in the 43rd Ward. The restoration project would include dredging, landscape restoration and new pathways, lighting and a new boardwalk, according to a presentation from the city’s planning department. As of July 21, the Lincoln Park Conservancy reported it had more than $6.8 million of the $7.3 million project donated or pledged. The Lincoln Park Conservancy in the same update projected dredging of the pond could begin “later in the fall.”