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Nothing has happened, except that the newer wings behind the hospital have been demolished, leaving a large vacant lot open for development. In late 2003, Landmarks Illinois issued a $75 million re-use plan created by board member Joe Antunovich and McCaffery Interests to convert the hospital into offices and housing for nurses.
Again nothing happened. In 2005, County Board Republicans battled against a $1.4 million no-bid contract to develop a re-use plan.
In 2009, a re-use report was issued from Jones Lang LaSalle that essentially said that there was no demand for using the building as a commercial office building, a hotel, dorm, school or rental or senior housing, and again recommended renovating the building as offices for the County's health system. In March of 2010, the County Board voted 17-0 to approve an $108 million adaptive reuse plan, with a projected completion by 2012.
Nothing happened. Two years later, even the graffiti is getting old.
update report, including an interview Landmarks Illinois President Bonnie McDonald.. I had originally embedded the video in this post, but since it had the annoying habit of auto-starting every time you loaded my blog, I removed it. You can see the video here.
In the report, Toni Preckwinkle had this to say . . .
We've made a substantial investment over time just to preserve the building. Now we have to decide whether it merits renovation.
My inclination is always towards preservation. However, you know, if it costs twice as much to preserve the building as it would to build a new facility that would meet some of our needs on the campus then it doesn't make sense.While the price for the U.S. Equities report in 2005 was $1.4 million, in 2012 Preckwinkle proposed paying U.S. Equities $9.8 million for a plan covering all county real estate. Loo has reported it would be released in the next couple months. Four months later, it still has not. This afternoon, the office of Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin emailed me, “I expect the report soon but have no specific date.” There are concerns that such reports often are written to support conclusions previously arrived at, behind closed doors.
Originally intended to be ten stories high, it would up being only eight.
The National Trust calls Cook County “possibly the only high-style Beaux-Arts public hospital ever built in the United States [and] one of the most elaborate Beaux-Arts public buildings in the city of Chicago.”
The steel frame's widely spaced columns were from 18 to 22 feet apart, creating a very open floorpan. The facades were made of granite, Kittanning brick, and a wealth of terra cotta in the form of imitation granite, as trim, and ornament, and in mansard roofs of green glazed terra cotta.
monument to Louis Pasteur (and heliport), its the grand backdrop consigned to storage. Sadly, slowly crumbling, it waits to be called back to role it knows so well, as the visual marker that stitches the medical center into the broader cityscape, and Chicago's proud past to its re-energizing future.
The Pasteur Monument, or, Why do Dead Scientists always seem to get the Hot Babes?