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Chicago’s River North will soon be welcoming a new boutique apartment building to the neighborhood. The plans for the new apartments – at 61 W. Erie Street – have been through the wringer and I’m totally loving the direction the developers have settled on. 

A rendering of a new apartment building in Chicago's River North
Rendering of the new boutique apartment complex coming to 61 W. Erie St. in River North. Image: LG Development/Jonathan Splitt Architects

Originally envisioned as a 12-story condominium building, the plans were first scrapped for a scaled-down hotel. That made sense in tourist-friendly River North. But, then came the coronavirus pandemic, again sending developers back to the drawing board.  

Looking ahead to what will likely become a post-pandemic new norm, the building will boast specialize work/live layouts. This means its 6-stories will feature spacious floor plans geared towards renters looking for the ultimate home office environment. 

Developer and Designer Team

At the helm of construction is Chicago-based LG Development Group, a full-service general contracting and development firm. Their portfolio includes ultra-luxurious single-family homes, restaurants, retail and apartments and condominiums. 

Aesthetically, this newest project will look pretty different from some of LG’s more modern apartments. While several of their other buildings are clad in steel panel structures, this new project is all classic tan-toned masonry. The look will fit into River North’s neighborhood seamlessly. 

Chicago’s Jonathan Splitt Architects, who have experience working with LG, are taking the lead on the design. Their portfolio includes everything from custom residential to mixed-use high-rises. They were even the design-geniuses behind my fave West Loop restaurant, Duck Duck Goat

Open concept living at 3833 N. Broadway in Chicago
Jonathan Splitt Architects design for a 1 bedroom with den apartment at 3833 N. Broadway. Image: LG Development/Jonathan Splitt Architects

Design Forecast 

While we’ve seen a sneak peek at the building’s exterior, the interior details are still a mystery. 

What we do know is that this will be a mixed-use six-story property with ground-floor retail. The rental units will be a mix of 7 studios, and 21 work/live floor plans with unspecified bedrooms. Residents in these 28 apartments will enjoy a rooftop outdoor sundeck and enclosed resident lounge.

What the rooftop of 61 W. Erie apartments will look like
Birdseye view rendering of the chic rooftop sun deck coming to 61 W. Erie apartment building. Image:LG Development/Jonathan Splitt Architects

Design Speculation

Design clues are scant, but they are clearly indicating that the interiors will be top-end. After all, they were originally slated to be condos. So, I’m expecting to see high-end stainless steel appliances, stone countertops, impeccable hardwood floors, and full-size washers and dryers in all units. 

With the developers specifically describing these apartments as special work/live spaces, I imagine they’ll be super spacious. I also hope they’ll have a generous home office space with a closed door. Anyone that has been adjusting to new “co-workers” at home during the pandemic knows all too well that an enclosed home office space is indeed a luxury. And, it’s one that more renters are now willing to stretch their budget to accommodate. 

Living in River North

This apartment is located in the heart of River North, near the intersection of Erie and Dearborn. What’s not to love about this neighborhood? It’s loaded with amazing and diverse restaurants and bars, art galleries, antique shops, and luxury retail.  And, while the many nearby hotels accommodate thousands of tourists annually, River North does not feel too touristy. 

Get Outside and Play 

The river, lake and parks are nearby, so while this is definitely a downtown zone, there are plenty of places to enjoy the outdoors. You can even sharpen your tennis game, especially as you expand your explorations into Streeterville and Gold Coast, which are both seamlessly adjacent to River North.

Since River North is a great neighborhood for dog owners, we’ll keep our fingers crossed that these new apartments are dog-friendly apartments. Take a walk along the river with your pup, or make new furry friends at the wide-open green space at the end of Chicago Avenue. 

Get Around Town 

If you work in the hospitality industry, River North is a great neighborhood to live and work in. There are also pretty diverse places to work within walking distance (even if your office is at home). Tech start-ups, design and architecture firms, advertising agencies, law offices, healthcare, major retail and prestigious schools are all found in River North.

When you need to travel to other parts of the city, or further away, River North has plenty of ways to get around, including quick access to I-90, Lake Shore Drive, and multiple CTA trains and bus routes. You can definitely maximize a packed work-hard/play-hard lifestyle, without needing to spend a ton of time commuting.

The neighborhood around 61 W Erie, new apartments coming to River North
Area map surrounding the River North neighborhood and new apartments coming to 61 W Erie in downtown Chicago.

River North Neighborhood Highlights

Nearby Workplaces 

  • Northwestern Medicine / Northwestern University
  • Loyola University Chicago
  • The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • Chinese Consulate General
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers 
  • Merchandise Mart 
  • The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • Havas Chicago Advertising Agency  

Restaurants and Bars

Parks and Recreation

  • Chicago Riverwalk
  • Washington Square Park
  • Montgomery Ward Park
  • Lakeshore Park – fieldhouse, track, tennis courts, playground
  • Historic Water Tower park and gallery

Shopping

Transportation

If living in River North sounds amazing to you, connect with HotSpot Rentals today. Our team of experienced experts can efficiently help you narrow down your search to the perfect place in no time at all!

Blog Author Signature: Sarah
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