Tribune Printing Plant Could Get 4 New Towers Next Door

DNAInfo | September 08, 2017

By David Matthews

RIVER WEST — The developer of land near the Tribune's riverfront printing plant has big plans for the site: four new towers, one of them residential.

A joint venture between Chicago-based Riverside Investment & Development and Tribune Media filed a zoning application with city officials Wednesday outlining its big plans for the 7-acre property at 700 W. Chicago Ave.

If realized, the project would replace a vacant industrial building near the Tribune's Freedom Center with a bevy of new high-rise homes, hotel rooms, offices and retail centered on a public plaza on the north branch of the Chicago River.

The first phase of the project calls for a 12-story office tower on the eastern end of the site. The tallest tower could reach 610 feet tall, the application shows.

“Today’s submission ... is a major milestone for the new River District in the city of Chicago,”  Murray McQueen, president of Tribune Real Estate Holdings, a Tribune subsidiary, said in a statement. “Tribune Media and Riverside Investment & Development are proud of today’s planned development submittal and are excited about the transformational nature of the mixed-use campus plan for this site."

The development would not affect the Tribune's printing plant , which has been owned by Tribune Media since its 2014 spinoff from the newspaper publisher now known as Tronc.

The filing confirms many elements of the plan that were accidentally shared online earlier this year, including the new riverwalk and public park.

Renderings were drawn by Chicago-based Goettsch Partners, which has partnered with Riverside Investment on the 52-story tower at 150 N. Riverside Plaza, a planned tower at 110 N. Wacker Drive and Union Station's planned redevelopment.

Tribune Media's site is the home of a parking lot and "insertion plant" that supported the Tribune's printing press until it closed in 2012. Tribune Media announced Riverside as its development partner for the property two years ago.

The project would require significant funding as well as the blessing of city officials, who have the right to amend or reject the developer's plans.