City Selects Five Finalists to Compete for Loop Redevelopment Project

September 22, 2020

The City of Chicago and its partners at C40 Cities have selected five local development teams as finalists to purchase and redevelop City-owned land at Van Buren Street and Plymouth Court in the Loop, Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot announced today.

The five groups, selected in response to a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) issued earlier this year in conjunction with the international C40 Reinventing Cities competition, are being exclusively invited to submit mixed-use redevelopment proposals for the 16,000-square-foot location. The winner will be chosen through a formal Request for Proposals (RFP) process that launches today and concludes this fall.

The five finalists include:

Common Good Collaborative
Developer: Lendlease and KMA Co.
Architect: Valerio Dewalt Train and Association and Latent Design
Environmental Consultant: dbHMS 

The Community Builders/Studio Gang
Developer: The Community Builders
Architect: Studio Gang, DesignBridge and JAQ Corp.
Environmental Consultant: dbHMS 

Developer: DL3 Realty and CityPads
Architect: Perkins + Will and Brook Architecture
Environmental Consultant: dbHMS

Team Unity
Developer: Keith Giles, Mercy Housing, and Chicago TREND Corporation
Architect: Fitzgerald Architects
Environmental Consultant: Transsolar Inc. 

Turnstone Development
Developer: Turnstone Development and Lightengale Group
Architect: MKB Architects and Mir Collective
Environmental Consultant: dbHMS

“Each of these teams represent extensive design and build expertise,” Department of Planning and Development First Deputy Commissioner Eleanor Gorski said“We expect them each to submit creative proposals that maximize this unique opportunity to support economic development, affordable housing, open space and sustainability in the heart of the Loop.

Thirteen teams responded to the City’s RFQ. The finalist selection committee included representatives from the Chicago Loop Alliance, the Near South Planning Board, South Loop Advisory Committee, the Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Libraries, and Chicago Transit Authority.

The L-shaped site consists of vacant land, a vacant commercial building and a vacant parking garage that are adjacent to the Harold Washington Library Center, the State Street retail corridor and multiple rapid transit lines.

Redevelopment proposals must leverage the site’s location with a viable mix of uses, including improvements that enhance the adjacent Pritzker Park as public open space, among other requirements, according to the RFP. Review criteria will include the completeness of each submission, purchase price, quality of the development plan, appropriateness of the proposed uses relative to the surrounding community, site plan and design concepts, and the experience and financial capacity of the development team, among other considerations.

C40 is a global network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change. Chicago’s participation in C40’s 2019 Reinventing Cities competition resulted in the selection of Garfield Green, an environmentally sustainable, mixed-income project at Fifth and Kedzie avenues in East Garfield Park.

“The 2020 Chicago finalists have developed rigorous methodologies to strive for zero-carbon objectives and I am excited to see how they will develop their proposals in the final stage,” C40 Cities Regional Director Laura Jay said. “More than ever, many cities, businesses and individuals are committed to progress and leading the effort to create a more sustainable and inclusive world.”

The winning redevelopment project for this year’s competition is expected to be announced by Mayor Lightfoot in early 2021. For more information, visit


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