LINCOLN PARK — With everyone remarking on the good omen of an unseasonably warm day for Tuesday, the Elevate Lincoln Park luxury apartment complex held its formal groundbreaking.
Dan Slack of Baker Development, which put the project together, called it "a significant contribution to the community, one that will provide a much-needed shot in the arm for the Lincoln Corridor."
Elevate Lincoln Park was announced in the spring to replace Lincoln Centre, a residential and office building known primarily for its rooftop tennis courts seen from the CTA "L" tracks where no one ever seemed to be playing tennis.
"This building replaces probably one of the ugliest buildings in our neighborhood, and we're very glad that it is now going to be one of the most beautiful," Ald. Michele Smith (43rd) said. "We are really going to revitalize this area and truly make Lincoln Park the premier place in the city to live, work, shop and be entertained."
"We really firmly believe that between our project here and the Children's Memorial project it will really act as the two ends of a barbell, and everything in between will really benefit from it," Slack said. "It'll invite new investment, it'll invite new retailers and residents, people who want to invest in the area."
The mixed-use building will include more than 16,000 square feet of retail space near the Apollo Theater to the north. Slack said even though it's considered a transit-oriented development, giving developers a break on parking requirements, it would be providing more parking than necessary to help bring customers to an area where congested parking has always been a drawback.
Smith saw it also as a "cultural hub" running from the Apollo south on Lincoln to the Greenhouse Theater.
Lincoln Centre was demolished over the summer, and Slack said Baker insisted it go as smoothly as possible, although there were some recent problems with trucks carrying dirt coating cars along Sheffield Avenue.
The new building is expected to be completed a year from now, and Aaron Galvin of Luxury Living Chicago Realty said developers would begin pre-leasing units in the spring.
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