The Fordham Spire, a new residential and hotel tower designed by famed architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava, today received approval from the City of Chicago Planning Commission.
"This is an important day for us. With this approval, we're on our way to adding another architectural treasure to this great city," said Christopher T. Carley, chairman and CEO of Fordham Co., which is developing the Fordham Spire. "We know the Spire will be a beautiful icon of the city's skyline. It will contain 300 of Chicago's finest homes and a five-star hotel."
The 124-story Fordham Spire, measuring 2,000 feet to the top of its spire and 1,600 feet to its roof, will be the tallest structure in the United States. It will be located at North Water Street and Lake Shore Drive, where the Chicago River meets Lake Michigan.
Carley has been working to bring one of Calatrava's designs to Chicago for more than three years. Calatrava, a world-renowned architect, artist and engineer, is the recipient of numerous international design awards. His work was the subject of a recent exhibition, Santiago Calatrava: Sculpture into Architecture, at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
"I am very happy that people have understood our desire to develop this design beyond the ideas we first presented," said Santiago Calatrava. "Now we have taken everything a step further, in order to connect this building to the city around it."
Following today's approval, confirmation by the full City Council is expected at its next meeting. Completion of the tower is anticipated in 2010. In today's Chicago Planning Commission meeting, Ald. Burton F. Natarus said, "This is a very unique, historic moment for our city. The Fordham Spire is a profound project, one with great sensitivity to Chicago's great architecture, and I am proud and pleased to support it."