RIVER WEST — The next riverfront tower could be built next to the Tribune's printing plant, where a developer apparently eyes a massive mixed-use project with new retail and a riverwalk.
Though preliminary, a rendering once posted on Riverside Investment & Development's website shows a 1.5-million-square-foot residential and office development with riverfront retail and a new 4.5-acre park at 700 W. Chicago Ave., next to the Tribune's Freedom Center.
The rendering offers clarity about the developer's vision for the riverfront property, which Tribune Media acquired after its split from the newspaper publisher now known as Tronc. The new project would have more floor space than the 52-story high-rise it recently opened at 150 N. Riverside Plaza. Tribune Media selected Chicago-based Riverside Investment & Development as its development partner for the property in 2015
The adjoining riverfront park would feature "outdoor dining, a great lawn, town square and amphitheater seating for gatherings and entertainment," the developer said on its website. The property near Chicago Avenue and Halsted Street has skyline views and sits across the Chicago River from Groupon's headquarters at 600 W. Chicago Ave. The rendering was drawn by Chicago-based Goettsch Partners, which has partnered with Riverside Investment on 150 N. Riverside, a tower at 110 N. Wacker Drive and Union Station's planned redevelopment.
Gary Weitman, a spokesman for Tribune Media, said that the rendering has been removed from Riverside Investment's website after being mistakenly posted online. The plan has not been submitted to city officials, and as such "has not been finalized and is very much a work in progress," Weitman said.
Jesse Smart, an assistant to 27th Ward Ald. Walter Burnett, whose ward includes the riverfront property, said that there's "nothing going on right now" with the proposed project. Representatives of the developer did not immediately return a message seeking comment.
The rendering was removed after Curbed Chicago first reported its existence on the website Tuesday afternoon.