Vista Property Group proposes tower at 640 W. Randolph

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Chicago Construction News staff writer

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Developer Vista Property Group wants to build a mixed-use tower at 640 W. Randolph. Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd Ward) discussed the development in his recent newsletter to constituents.

If approved, the new building would transform a parking lot at the northwest corner of W. Randolph St and N. Desplaines St.

W.E O’Neil will be the project’s general contractor.

Designed by Antunovich Associates, the mixed-use building will be 15 stories with 2,500 sq. ft. of retail space and 117,00 sq. ft. of office space. The plan also includes a ground floor bike room, rooftop club room, outdoor terrace, fitness center, and meeting center.

According to Reilly’s newsletter, the new office building on the 12,486 sq. ft. site will have a first-floor office lobby fronting West Randolph Street and about 2,500 sq.-ft. of retail space. The development will also have terraces areas, fitness space, conference room facilities, interior bicycle storage and repair and parking for approximately 19 vehicles.Reilly said as a result of feedback, the Vista team made the following changes to the original proposal:

  • Relocated the retail entry to the Randolph frontage, to help further activate Randolph Street.
  • Updated the proposal to reflect a large interior protected bike storage and repair lounge adjacent to the office lobby, where there was previously a solid wall.
  • Relocated the parking ramp, which was previously along the Des Plaines right-of-way, but is now shifted to the West side of the building. This has provided for greater separation between vehicular traffic and pedestrian space. This shift also allows for more active retail use along the Des Plaines façade where some of the area that the ramp previously occupied.
  • Shifted the building core/vertical circulation toward the interior of the building, which allows for active spaces and vision glazing along the West façade of the building.
  • Redesigned the West façade. Previously, it was a concrete sheer wall, but it has now been articulated predominantly in brick, with areas of punched hole openings / glazing.
  • Studied and provided additional detail on the public right-of-way along both Randolph Street and Des Plaines Street. Both street lighting as well as building lighting in the form of decorative scones on every pilaster marching down the street will significantly improve lighting and security at this corner which was previously occupied by an on-grade parking lot. Streetscape trees will be placed every 25’-0”, planters with ornamental railings and bicycle parking racks will be spread throughout both frontages to further improve these two important streetscapes.

“Given the proposed development seeks to utilize the Neighborhoods Opportunity bonus, it will require approval as a planned development (PD) and, as such, will require approvals by the Chicago Plan Commission, Committee on Zoning and City Council,” he wrote.

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