Chicago Spire to Make a Comeback

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Once slated to be North America’s tallest building, but stalled in 2008 when the housing bubble burst, the Chicago Spire condominium property is headed back toward social prominence.

The tower’s original developer, Garrett Kelleher, bought the raw land in 2006 for a reported $64 million and then took out a $54 million loan to actually build the condominium. While Kelleher has high hopes of resuming work on the building himself, there are currently several investors bidding on the unfinished project.

According to the original plan, Kelleher and Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava were going to build a drill-bit-shaped tower housing condos that would range in price from $750,000 to $2 million.

Unfortunately, when the Chicago condo market tanked with the rest of national real estate, the project was abandoned. But now with the upswing of condo sales in Chicago, and even a surge in new construction, developers are taking interest in the Chicago Spire again.

According to Wall Street Journal, there have been at least a dozen bids fielded by Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency (NAMA), the entity managing the country’s distressed real estate assets. While Garrett Kelleher still holds the title for this property, he does not have day-to-day control.

Other bidders for the Spire include DeBartolo Development of Tampa and Stephen Ross’ Related Cos. of New York. Both are already active developers throughout downtown Chicago—currently, DeBartolo is working on a 42-story apartment tower near Michigan Avenue.

Despite most of the bids being lower than the actual debt of the property, receiving serious bids at all is “the latest sign that competition for land parcels in downtown Chicago is gaining momentum,” according to Wall Street Journal.

Anyone familiar with Chicago can appreciate a developer’s interest in the property, which is located near the famous Navy Pier, and each of the individual units offer a spectacular view of Lake Michigan.

If this statuesque Chicago condo tower sparks your interest, keep in touch with your Chicago real estate agent to find out which bidder is triumphant and when leasing will begin.