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Trump Tower (Chicago)

Trump strikes gold with this tower. Amazing beyond belief.

There is no way the Toronto Tower can ever hope to compare to this beauty. It's pure PoMo crapola!!
November 29, 2007



Wonderful Tower....

Can you imagine if this tower was built in Toronto. Everyone would be whining and complaining.....blah blah blah...

We got pure crap at the corner of Bay and Adelaide.....(i.e crapola)

Comparing Actual on top (26.December) to Model rendering immediately underneath. (The same angles, time of day, and the very same motor vehicles, all point to Adobe Photoshop as the probable tool used to construct the second image.)


Courtesy SSP / aaron38

Viewing Trump Chicago at night, near the base at the Auto Ramp (left and centre respectively). The rectangular former office structure (right), is Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's IBM Building.


Courtesy SSP / cbotnyse

People have been moved into this building, despite the ongoing construction. This is being done in phases. More on that in a later post.
People have been moved into this building, despite the ongoing construction.

Seriously? The building isn't even 2/3'rds done yet and people are living in it already. It must be pretty weird living in a construction site.
Seriously? The building isn't even 2/3'rds done yet and people are living in it already. It must be pretty weird living in a construction site.

Yes Conrad Black, I am serious, although that was intended to be a bit of a teaser at the end of the post in which I left it.

There are certain types of skyscraper buildings, in certain cities, and for various reasons, that developers push to get people into as early as possible - usually in phases.

Chicago has done this in the past, and continues to do it now, on a case-by-case basis. I know that Aqua and Trump International Tower Chicago were going to try this because each announced this plan in advance. It will actually be easier with Trump Chicago than Aqua, because of the way that skyscraper is vertically zoned in relation to services (electrical, mechanical etc). But the wild card is the lot itself, because a portion of it borders the Chicago River. I will explain later.

Having been in this business for a number of years as a Structural Engineer and Consultant, I know that this is worked out with the General Contractor and the Developer first. Then arrangements are sought with the city, and liabilities are discussed with the lending banks and the appropriate city offices that must grant the licensing. Finally, the potential immanent customers - residents, businesses, hotels - are made aware before a general announcement is made. That is what is happening at Trump Chicago in a textbook fashion up to the first phase.

The site must be managed well to pull this off, so certain General Contractors are in demand. One such GC in Chicago that I will discuss is McHugh Construction, for which this is a decided specialty, and they are being used by both Aqua and Trump Chicago.

If you look at Toronto, which is typically 'sloppy' in most of its construction sites this would not work. But there is an example that goes counter to this, the well-managed Met construction site. If an early move-in scenario were contemplated here, the GC(s) at the Met would be the first ones I would interview, or have interviewed. But the topic is narrowed here to Trump Chicago, and I will post only to that in the next post(s).
Mr. Alexander's full name and title are David Alexander, Senior Vice President, McHugh Construction. As you will note, Trump International Tower Chicago is specifically singled out for early phase move-ins, as is Aqua. Permits had not been granted at the time of this article.

James McHugh Construction is one of the oldest and most prestigious construction firms in Chicago. It was founded in 1897, and has handled accounts as varied as Elevated trains to landmark skyscrapers in the area.

Concrete Puts the Waves In Aqua

Jeanne Gang's $300 million Aqua project is as much a sculpture in concrete as it is a mixed-use tower, making its construction all the more complex.

By Jeff Yoders, Associate Editor
February 26, 2006
Building Design + Construction

Jeanne Gang, principal of Studio/Gang/Architects in Chicago, began planning the design of Aqua, her first high-rise project, by examining the way tall buildings relate to their surroundings. Gang's 822-foot, 2.2-million-sf mixed-use tower has been designed to fit into the context of its downtown Chicago neighborhood near the highly popular Millennium Park. ...

The design presents construction challenges for local general contractor James McHugh Construction, whose concrete portfolio includes the city's corncob-like Marina City Towers of more than 40 years ago up to the new Trump International Tower along the Chicago River. ...

It is anticipated that a number of tenant uses will come online before the Aqua project is completed in 2009. Construction workers will still be completing the upper floors when the hotel opens on floors 4-19. The apartments on floors 20-53 are planned to open early, too.

Alexander noted that the Trump International Tower Chicago will also open its lower floors before completion. “Safety is the biggest concern, of course,†he said. “Beyond that, moving construction crews around tenants is challenging,†with vertical transportation from only 24 elevators and four hoists in the whole building. There is also a need to control dust, noise, and water during construction. “It's something we've done before for tall building projects like this,†said Alexander. “I think it's going to become more common for these projects. This is the way they are being built now.â€

© 2008, Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

ROCP 1 was like this. People were moving into the bottom 10 floors while the top floors still had the crane and no cladding.

I assumed that this was not done in Toronto based on the original question from Conrad Black, and what I have seen in my brief stay here. I do have two or three questions after your input:

  • How was the construction managed? (By this I mean how were the tenants protected from any particular hazards of construction?)
  • Was early move-in planned from the beginning or not?

Appreciate any response on these Qs.
Fair enough.

I do have one more source-based post on Trump Chicago. If I can find it on the Internet, or a suitable substitute, I will post it.

The permit delay shows some reluctance by the city, because Trump International Tower Chicago was on the priority or fast-track list. But once that permit is received this allows for move-in to officially start, before the building is completed.

Trump International Hotel & Tower gets city permit after delay
By Susan Diesenhouse | Tribune staff reporter
5:33 PM CST, December 28, 2007

After a delay of several weeks, the Trump International Hotel & Tower on Friday received a city permit to occupy the 339-unit hotel portion of the approximately $775 million project.

"We're glad to have this done and excited to get the hotel up and running," said Donald Trump Jr., executive vice president of development and acquisitions for the Trump Organization, developer of the 92-story project.

The certificate applies to the space that starts four levels underground and rises to the 23rd floor, said Bill McCaffrey, a spokesman for the Chicago Department of Buildings, which issued the permit.

The clearance also means Trump will begin to alert buyers that they can close on the approximately 220 units they have agreed to purchase. Trump expects to start closings in late January.

Given today's trying credit conditions and soft real estate market, industry observers will be watching to see how many buyers will close on their purchases.

I remember units were also getting occupied in his Manhattan Tower before it was topped out. The 90 story building near the UN.