After quite a while of uncertainty and setbacks, 2023 looks set to see real changes to the makeup of the South Loop and its surroundings. Related Midwest’s 62-acre megadevelopment plan known as ‘The 78’ is underway and will be completed by the end of this year.
Work on the flagship connected towers known as the ‘Gateway Towers’ and the overall new neighborhood development, aptly called ‘The 78’ project is a $7 billion investment that plans to create “our next great neighborhood.”
Located near Chinatown, the new development will shortly become the 78th community area in Chicago. As for the towers, according to te 78 Chicago website, the Gateway Towers will be “two striking and complementary skyscrapers that rise to create an iconic profile in the Chicago skyline” and act as “the ‘gateway’ to The 78, welcoming tens of thousands of employees every day.”
The towers will be connected by a curvilinear multi-level skybridge near the base and will be located at the intersection of W Roosevelt Road and S Clark Street near the northeast corner of The 78’s acreage, as seen below.
Meanwhile, the seven-acre ‘Crescent Park’ will be developed adjacent to the towers and nestled within the 62-acre development area that plans to revamp a half-mile of riverfront and provide unprecedented waterfront access. Both the duration and the cost of the project are not crystal clear but The 78 website reads that the project will provide thousands of new homes and create 15,000 new construction jobs.
With plans to include a bustling restaurant, shopping and entertainment district, the ‘next great neighborhood’ is shaping up to be something else! Said to feature “cultural events, academia and outdoor recreational space” as well, the ‘groundbreaking new neighborhood” is already under construction.
University of Illinois also released renderings of a $250 million-plus headquarters for its brand new Discovery Partners Institute! This research and academic facility in the South Loop will add a long awaited new branch to the university.
Here are some renderings from Skidmore Owings & Merrill, the design architect for both The 78’s masterplan and its sub-projects, that give us an idea of what the groundbreaking new neighborhood will look like:
More images and information can be found at www.78chicago.com.