Old Chicago Main Post Office Redevelopment
|Old Chicago Main Post Office Phase II|
Rendering of the proposed complex
West Congress Parkway and South Canal Street,433 West Van Buren
|Roof||2,000 feet (610 m)|
|Floor area||16,000,000 square feet (1,500,000 m2)|
|Design and construction|
|Developer||International Property Developers|
The Old Chicago Main Post Office Redevelopment was an approved 20-acre (81,000 m2) project on a lot located along the Chicago River on the southwest side of Downtown Chicago, Illinois to be constructed in phases over a period of one decade that would have includes the renovation of Chicago's historic Old Main Post Office building as well as residential, retail, entertainment and office space. The plan included several towers, the tallest one being a proposed 120-story mixed use twin tower skyscraper to stand about 2,000 feet (610 m) high to the roof, which would have made it the tallest building in the United States, over 500 feet (150 m) taller than the Willis Tower, containing office, residential, and hotel space. It would also have included two 60-story residential towers as well as a 40-story hotel. All the buildings in the development were to be connected via a ground level complex that would have been built over the Chicago River and the Eisenhower Expressway.
The proposal was sent to Chicago City Commission in July 2011 for approval, which was expected to be a several month process. The project had an estimated cost of $3.5 billion and the potential to create 12,000 jobs. Some critics opposed the proposal, calling it old-fashioned and suburban and an unrealistic pipe dream, as it was largely car oriented (12,000 parking spaces and free parking) with shopping mall style retail. The city voted and approved the plan July 18, 2013.
In December 2014, Davies canceled the project and put the post office building up for sale.
On June 9, 2009, the Chicago Sun-Times reported that the postal service was placing the post office on the auction block. Held on August 27 and conducted by Rick Levin & Associates Inc., the auction raised $40 million, which was well over the opening bid of $300,000. The buyer was reported to be English real estate developer Bill Davies. While Davies missed an October 10, 2009 deadline to close the deal, he finally acquired the building on October 21, 2009, paying about $17 million.
Exactly one year and nine months after acquiring the post office property from the Postal Service, Davies unveiled his plan for the Post Office on July 21, 2011. The proposal, which involved three other properties besides the 14-story Post Office, was broken down into three-phases pending the required $3.5 billion in funding:
- Phase 1: Converting the Post Office into a retail complex whose main entrance would be through the Beaux Arts-inspired lobby along Van Buren street, the remaining interior would become a parking garage, and a 40-story hotel on the east side of the building. (Approximate cost: $450 million)
- Phase 2: Building a 60-story hotel west of the Post Office and a 120-story, 2,000 ft (610 m) office, hotel, and residential tower that would be the tallest in North America. (Approximate cost: $2 billion)
- Phase 3: Two residential towers built on the east side of the Chicago River diagonally southeast from the proposed 120-story skyscraper plus a 12,000 space parking garage. (Approximate cost: $1 billion)
The whole $3.5 billion plan was submitted to the Chicago City Council and the Planning Commission for approval the same day it was released to the public. Only funding for Phase 1 has been secured as of July 21, 2011.
In spring of 2013, Antunovich Associates, who purchased the site three years ago, created a new proposal on the site featuring a 1000-foot skyscraper (with a 2,000 foot tower in their 2nd phase). Other potential uses include a casino and/or entertainment complex.  
On June 18, 2014, Bill Davies announced the formation of a $500 million joint venture with Sterling Bay Companies for phase I of the redevelopment. On July 18, Sterling announced a new relationship with J.P. Morgan Asset Management, which gave them access to new financial resources.
The plan was canceled at the end of 2014, with Davies putting the property up for sale.
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