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River North Parking Lot Could Make Way For Million-Dollar Condos

 A developer wants to replace a River North parking lot with 45 million-dollar condos. 
Proposed condo tower at 365 W. Huron St.
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RIVER NORTH — More million dollar condos could be headed to River North, where a developer wants to replace a parking lot with a 10-story luxury tower.

Chicago-based Morningside Group pitched neighbors Monday on the 45-condo tower it wants to build at 365 W. Huron St. 

If built, the tower at Huron and Sedgwick streets would contain large, mostly three-bedroom condominiums with private balconies. There would be no ground-floor retail, but residents could enjoy a dog run and grilling deck on the rooftop. 

Morningside Group, which is also converting a shuttered Uptown school to apartments, bought the parking lot from City Hall in 2015 amid a record construction spree Downtown.

"This will fill in sort of a missing tooth in the fabric of the city," architect Steven Rezabek of Pappageorge Haymes Partners, which is designing the project, told neighbors Monday.

Prices would roughly range from about $1.2 million to $2.2 million, Morningside Group President David Strosberg said.

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New condos are few and far between in post-recession Chicago, where developers have mostly focused on building apartments for rent. 

But high-end condos have returned in recent years to well-heeled neighborhoods such as River North, where new condo projects are underway at the former Citizen Bar at 360 W. Erie St., next to Trump Tower and 300 W. Huron St. 

Some neighbors at Monday's meeting were skeptical about adding more condos to the mix, but Strosberg believes the time is right.

"It’s a market that sees its ups and downs and (we) recognize there’s quite a bit of supply," he said. But "we think there is plenty of room; there have been very little condominiums developed since the crash and we think there is pent-up demand."

Strosberg told neighbors the developer originally wanted a 15-story tower on the site, but Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd) cut it down.  

Reilly said there's a need for "relief" from sky-high towers in the part of River North west of Orleans Street, where the majority of buildings remain lofts and other mid-rise housing stock. 

The new tower at 365 W. Huron would include 51 parking spaces — more than its number of units — but Reilly said the project would still likely draw less traffic than the parking lot currently occupying the site.

"This is reasonable in feasibility, scale and use," Reilly said.

Reilly and the River North Residents Association hosted the presentation Monday because the proposed project requires a zoning change that would ultimately be approved by the city council. Reilly told neighbors he would discuss potential changes with Morningside Group before reintroducing the project to City Hall.


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Proposed development at 365 W. Huron St. by Dave Matthews on Scribd