Chicago Spire - March 15, 2007 Presented to Friends of the Parks
MID-LEVEL (Lower LSD)
GROUND-LEVEL (Under LSD)
Spire Site before 1980
Old Lake Shore Drive S-Curve
<----- Future DuSable Park Site
Chicago Spire Tower Site
DuSable Park Site
DuSable Park Site
Reflection Of Ceiling Light in Mirror "Water"--->
Possible Future Bike/Pedestrian Bridge ---->
Possible Future Funded Bike/Pedestrian Bridge
Spire Tower Site
DuSable Park Site
North Water Street
This sketch by Chicago Spire Designer Santiago Calatrava proposes three pedestrian approaches to the DuSable Park Site from the west: 1) DuSable Founder's Way (River Walkway), 2) Pedestrian Gateway in line with Water Street, and 3) the Ogden Slip Pedestrian Walkway. The proposed bike/pedestrian bridge is at the same level as Lower Lake Shore Drive to minimize the view obstruction from DuSable Park. The developer plans to start building in May, 2007 if approved by the Chicago Plan Commission and the Chicago City Council in April. The developer's representatives indicated their willingness to rebuild the DuSable seawall in conjunction with their own grading and 40-month construction schedule. A very detailed set of recommendations from the THE DUSABLE PARK COALITION in a letter dated March 20, 2007 is available for your review below the last graphic.
Ogden Slip Walkway
Chicago Spire tower is planned west of Lake Shore Drive in this area.
Public Plaza between the Spire and the River, directly west of Lake Shore Drive.
We appreciate the Spire team’s presentation to the DuSable Park Coalition on Thursday, March 15th. The Coalition was pleased with the opportunity to review the revised plans for the Chicago Spire project in terms of its impact on DuSable Park, which honors Jean Baptiste Pointe DuSable, Chicago’s first non-native settler & founder.
The Chicago Spire’s revised plan for parcels 18 and 19 of the original Chicago Dock and Canal land, west of Lake Shore Drive, displays a new approach for the Spire project west of Lake Shore Drive. The underground garage is a critical element that will benefit the Calatrava-designed Spire as well as the surrounding community. We applaud the dedication of the plaza in perpetuity as a public space. This public plaza will benefit both the condominium residents, the River East community and Chicagoans by providing additional open space along the DuSable Founder’s Way.
In their presentation, the Chicago Spire team indicated new appreciation for the framework plan for DuSable Park which is an essential part of Chicago’s Lakefront park system. There is recognition that the park should be connected to the Lakefront Pedestrian/Bike Path at the mid-level of Lake Shore Drive, as well as linked to DuSable Founder’s Way along the Chicago River to Founder’s Court on Michigan Avenue. We also noticed that the Spire Team, respecting DuSable’s role as a founder of Chicago, seems to understand that the history of the settlement of the City should be incorporated as an important component of the park.
Acknowledging these improvements, the DuSable Park Coalition offers recommendations for further revisions:
1.The proposed automobile ramp that begins at grade approximately 100’ from the southern park edge, crossing Water Street at grade and proceeding to elevate up to the mid-level of Lake Shore Drive should be eliminated. The car ramp encroaches on DuSable Park and creates hazardous collision points with park users: 1) with pedestrians entering the park on Water Street; and 2) with pedestrians, bikers and skaters using the lakefront path on the mid-level of Lake Shore Drive.
2.We continue to support the design and location of the proposed Navy Pier flyover tucked close to the drive’s structure. The flyover at the western edge of the park would not infringe on the park and provides more open space. Further, the Navy Pier flyover provides for pedestrian access from the Lakefront trail to DuSable Park Plaza, where the Puryear sculpture is to be located.
3.We concur that adding the third entryway by extending Water Street into the park does open up the view and vista from the west of Lake Shore Drive. However, we are concerned about the decreased amount of usable park space. Also while this additional entrance would add to the construction costs of DuSable Park, it is not clear that the Spire Development would pay for these additional costs.
4.We remain deeply concerned about the timing of the park’s construction. DuSable Park, dedicated in 1988, is one of three original open space requirements for Planned Development (PD#368) of the approximately 40 acre River East Development. However, commitments to construct the park have not been enforced, as the attached 1997 letter indicates. The coalition is skeptical of changes that will further delay the completion of DuSable Park.
The DuSable Park Coalition is available to meet with the Spire team at any time to continue this dialogue. It is our hope that we will be able to reach a consensus plan for DuSable Park that will not only honor Jean Batiste Pointe DuSable and respect the DuSable Park Framework Plan, but also be a positive amenity for the Chicago Spire.
We note that the Chicago Spire Team indicated a “commitment of resources” to build DuSable Park, and we would like to discuss with more specificity what this entails.
Since DuSable Park will benefit the Spire and adjacent neighborhood, as well as all Chicago, we urge delineation of the Spire’s financial contributions to the construction of DuSable Park.
We look forward to working with you to address our remaining concerns about DuSable Park.
The DUSABLE PARK COALITION
Erma Tranter, FRIENDS OF THE PARKS
Bessie Neal, CHICAGO DUSABLE LEAGUE
Haroon Rashid, FRIENDS OF DUSABLE
Dr. Mary Lunz, SOAR
Dr. Serge J.C. Pierre-Louis, ASSOCIATION OF HAITIAN PHYSICIANS ABROAD
Dr. Marilys Ewa, DUSABLE HERITAGE ASSOCIATION
Anna Anthony, NEAR
Peggy Montes, BRONZEVILLE CHILDREN’S MUSEUM
Dr. Mildred Olivier, MIDWEST ASSOCIATION OF HAITIAN AMERICAN WOMEN
Dr. Christopher Reed, ROOSEVELT UNIVERSITY
cc: Alderman Burton NatarusState Senator Kwame Raoul
Commissioner Lori HealyState Representative Elga Jeffries