SOUTH LOOP — The developer behind a new South Loop apartment tower has scaled down his proposal in a bid to win over neighbors and the alderman.
John Murphy of Chicago-based MB Real Estate on Monday revealed a slightly shorter proposal for the 500-unit luxury tower he wants to build at 1326 S. Michigan Ave. Introduced in September as a 48-story, 590-foot-tall high-rise, the proposed tower would now rise 515 feet and 46 stories.
The revised proposal also cuts the development's number of proposed parking spaces to 239 from 297 and moves the tower's parking entrance and exit to a nearby two-way alley from Michigan Avenue.
The developer made the changes in response to concerns previously raised by South Loop neighbors and Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd), who hosted the Murphy team as part of a ward town hall meeting Monday night at South Loop Elementary School, 1212 S. Plymouth Court.
"We're trying to maintain the [tower's] height in the context of surrounding buildings," Murphy said of the resized design.
Despite the changes, the aesthetic of the Solomon Cordwell Buenz-designed tower remains mostly unchanged. The development would still include street-level retail, and Murphy said Monday he is still pursuing restaurants and apparel stores as tenants.
The tower at 13th and Michigan is the second proposed South Loop development scaled down in recent weeks. A Helmut Jahn-designed skyscraper proposed a few blocks north at 1000 S. Michigan, in the city's Fourth Ward, is now being considered at 832 feet, from 1,000 feet tall.
Jack George, a Chicago-based attorney representing the Murphy development, said he hopes the 1326 S. Michigan Ave. proposal goes before the city's plan commission in March. The proposal would still require full city council approval if it passes the commission, and Murphy told neighbors Monday he hopes to open the tower some time in 2018.
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