Chicago LEW Tour Options

During the LEW registration you will be required to choose the tours you wish to participate in Friday afternoon, Saturday morning and Saturday afternoon.  You will also be asked to indicate if you will be doing the post LEW tour on Sunday.  Payment for the Sunday tour will be collected by at a later date.

Friday Morning, May 1

Chicago Architecture Center

8:30-10:30 am
The morning will kick off at the Chicago Architecture Center (CAC) located at the intersection of Michigan Avenue and the Chicago River.  CAC operates a museum with two floors of architectural exhibits and conducts boat, walking, bus and L tours to educate the public about Chicago’s architectural heritage.
Participants will be greeted by CAC President, CEO and Ely Chapter member Lynn Osmund and view the largest 3D model of Chicago with more than 4,200 buildings and cinematic elements.  Participants will tour the museum gallery and then assemble in the lecture hall for an overview of Chicago’s growth dynamics and evolving city skyline by Richard Wilson, Ely Chapter President 2020-21.
Immediately following the presentation, participants will embark on a CAC architectural boat tour along the Chicago River.
LAI President 2020
Jennifer Tammen, Ely Chapter President 2019 & LEW Chair
Lynn Osmond, CAC President and CEO
Richard Wilson, AIA, AICP, Ely Chapter President 2020-21

Chicago River Architectural Boat Tour

11:00 am -12:30 pm

Enjoy an architectural boat cruise along the Chicago River narrated by Ely Chapter member and CAC docent Mary Ludgin.  Hear fascinating stories behind more than 50 buildings along the Main Branch of the Chicago River and how the city grew from a small settlement into one of the world's largest cities in less than 100 years. The tour will highlight the Chicago Riverwalk, a newly constructed pedestrian space along the river’s edge that is widely recognized as a major driver of real estate value and growth in downtown.  The tour will also highlight major projects that are completed, planned or underway along the South Branch of the Chicago River, including the adaptive reuse of the Old Chicago Main Post Office, high density residential infill, Related Midwest’s “The 78,” and Chinatown’s Ping Tom Park.
Mary Ludgin, CAC Docent, Senior Managing Director – Head of Global Research at Heitman

Friday Afternoon, May 1

Fulton Market Tour Options

Fulton Market is transitioning from meat packing district to an edgy neighborhood known for its hotels, bars, and restaurants alongside new headquarter offices.  Three tour options explore different aspects of real estate development.

Option 1: “Make City” (Bus Tour and Site Visit)
Make City is a business incubator with 416,000 sf in four 1890s era warehouses.  It houses over 110 new and growing companies across a diverse set of industries, including manufacturing, professional services, food/beverage, and apparel.  This guided bus tour will provide an overview of recent developments in the area and culminate in an onsite tour of the Make City facility.

Option 2: Corporate Headquarters at Fulton Market (Walking Tour)
1KFulton, a former windowless cold-storage building joined with a new six-story structure, is best known as Google’s Midwest headquarters. Considered a pioneer in 2015, when it was developed, Google was a signal to other companies about the future of Fulton Market.

McDonald's return to Chicago after nearly 50 years on a suburban campus was described by its President as “symbolic of our journey to transform our brand and become more closely connected with our customers.”  The company’s new nine-story building, completed in 2018, accommodates diverse functions including Hamburger U and a museum.  

This  tour features a walk-through of the two properties.

Tour Leaders
Jack Houze, Principal, Property Management, Sterling Bay
Marie Lucas, Property Manager, Sterling Bay
Cindy Roubik, Assistant Commissioner, Department of Planning and Development
Richard Whitney, Vice President, FitzGerald

Option 3: From Meat Packing to Meeting Places (Walking Tour)
When Soho House opened in 2014 it was difficult to envision Fulton Market as the vibrant hospitality neighborhood it has become.  This 40-room membership hotel, part of a London-based private club chain, is located in a former belt factory.  Opened in 2019, London brand Hoxton Hotel was challenged with developing a new building that reflects both the historic and emerging characteristics of the neighborhood.

900 West is a renovation of 10 historic low-rise in the center of Fulton Market.  Renovations by Tucker Development feature 45,000 sf of street level retail and 45,000 sf of co-working space on upper floors. In partnership with Related Midwest, Tucker will be constructing a 43-story luxury apartment building as phase two of the redevelopment.

This  tour features a walk-through of properties.

Tour Leaders:
Jeff Shapack, Shapack Partners
Paige Hennessy, Shapack Partners
Aaron Tucker, Tucker Development

Saturday Morning, May 2

North Side Tours Options

Three tour options featuring transformative developments.

Option 1:  The 606 (Walking Tour)
Stretch your legs and join us for a fascinating walking tour of The 606, Chicago's answer to NYC's High Line.  This former Bloomingdale railway line is now a beautiful linear park stretching nearly 3 miles and connecting four ethnically and economically diverse Chicago neighborhoods.  

Key players will provide an overview of the planning and delivery of this park and the broad set of issues it had to address:  public space design, sustainability, public-private partnerships and gentrification.  

This walking tour will cover 1-2 miles of the trail in small groups with docents, giving participants the opportunity to experience the park and learn the story of its evolution.  Tour will happen rain or shine so pack your rain jacket and sunscreen.

Tour Leaders
Beth White, President and CEO of the Houston Parks Board, formerly Trust for Public Land
Jamie Simone, Sam Schwartz Engineering (formerly Trust for Public Land & Illinois Department of Transportation)
Ben Hephland, President of our Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail
John Paige, Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail.

Option 2:  Lathrop Est. 1938 (Bus and Walking Tour)
Lathrop Homes, built by the Works Progress Administration in 1938, was one of the first 52 public housing projects built in the United States and the 4th largest.  After over 10 years of planning and community engagement, the Historic North Campus has been rehabilitated and converted into a mixed-income community.  On the tour, you will learn the history of the site and hear about the intricacies of the planning and the community process to balance multiple contradictory voices of how the project should be redeveloped.  This tour will provide an opportunity to view the rehabilitated buildings and modern apartments, as well as the rehabilitated landscape and Riverwalk.   

Option 3:  Wrigley Field
At the conclusion of the 2014 baseball season, Wrigley Field commenced a long-awaited restoration and expansion known as the 1060 Project.  The goal of the 1060 Project is simple: to preserve the beauty, charm and historic features that Wrigley Field fans have cherished for more than a century, while upgrading the overall gameday experience.  Restoration of this iconic venue is the result of countless hours of research on Wrigley Field and its history, and collaboration with the Commission on Chicago Landmarks.

Join the Chicago Cubs for a behind-the-scenes tour of Wrigley Field and overview of their five-year, billion-dollar plan for the ballpark and a walk through of the adjoining entertainment area.

Saturday Afternoon, May 2

South Side Tours Options

Two tour options featuring transformative developments.  

Option 1:  Old Post Office (Walking Tour)

The “Old Post Office” is one of the most storied pieces of real estate in Chicago history.  Built in 1922 and expanded in 1932, this 12-story Art Deco building spans an expressway and Amtrak yard, and contains 2.5 million sf of floorspace.  It was built primarily to service Montgomery Ward and Sears whose combined business made Chicago the nation's mail-order capital.
The building was vacated in 1997, though placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2001.  In 2009, the postal service auctioned the building for $17 million.  After years of failed plans and intrigue, the building was acquired in 2017 by 601W who is converting it to contiguous, large-plate office space with spectacular amenities and river frontage.
With floorplates averaging 280,000 gross sf, it is attracting major office tenants, such as Uber, Walgreens, Ferrara Candy and others, with gross rental rates that are lower than typical downtown properties due to tax advantages of the building’s landmark status.
Tour Leaders
Grant Uhlir, Gensler (Lead Architect)
Rob Reuland, SITE (Lead Landscape Architect)
Telos Group, (Leasing Agency)


Option 2: Innovation in Affordable Housing (Bus Tour and Site Visit) SOLD OUT
Learn about Chicago’s affordable housing plans from Marisa Novara, Commissioner of the Department of Housing for the City of Chicago.  This guided bus tour will provide an overview of the City’s affordable housing initiatives and recent developments in the Pilsen/Little Village area.   The bus tour will feature one of the city’s first co-located Chicago Housing Authority and Public Library branches.  This development includes a one-story public library branch and a multi-story mixed-income residential complex, with additional community spaces at street level.
The bus tour will culminate in an onsite tour of Skender’s new advanced manufacturing facility. Skender, an established, family-owned builder in Chicago, is producing modular buildings and modular building components at their Little Village plant.  This tour gives participants a comprehensive overview of the modular building process, including walking along all stages of production as well as a glimpse inside Skender’s modular smart apartment prototype. You’ll learn and see how Skender creates steel-framed modules and outfits each unit up to 95% completion before they ship and stack on multifamily, hospitality and healthcare project sites.  
Tour Leaders:
Marisa Novara, Commissioner, Department of Housing, City of Chicago
Mark Skender CEO, Skender
Tim Swanson CDO (Chief Design Officer), Skender

Sunday May 3 Optional Post LEW Tour

Historic Pullman National Monument and Neighborhood

Larry Lund,,  is the point person for this tour.  Please contact him directly with any questions.

Sunday May 3, 2020 9:30 am to 2:30 pm
Bus Departs from Intercontinental Hotel and returning same.

Cost: $70 (will include bus and entry fee ($25)) Lunch on own at One Eleven Food Hall
The $70 fee will be collected at a later date.  You will be asked to RSVP during the LEW registration but the fee will not be collected at that time.

In 1879, George Pullman, President of the Pullman Palace Car Company, retained the landscape architect Nathan Barrett to lay out a new town and architect Solon Beman to design the buildings for the model town.  Pullman sought a solution for the housing problems arising from the industrial revolution by providing a high-quality living environment for his employees. Later in the 1920s, Richard T. Ely, who served as the catalyst for the founding of Lambda Alpha, used his experience visiting Pullman in creating “new towns” throughout the country.

In 1882, Richard T. Ely and his wife, Anna, stayed at the Florence Hotel in Pullman on their honeymoon, when the 28-year old Ely was a professor and Chairman of the Department of Political Economy at Johns Hopkins University.  While staying at the Florence Hotel, he interviewed the residents of Pullman.  His interviews served as a basis for a published article in the Harper’s Weekly in 1885.  This nationally syndicated critical review of the company town of Pullman launched Ely into the national spotlight.  

In the 1920s, Richard T. Ely, along with several early Lambda Alpha members, served on the board of Alexander Bing’s City Housing Corporation.  Ely’s experience at Pullman served as a basis of his thinking for new towns like Sunnyside NY, Greendale WI, Greenbelt MD, Greenhills OH, and Radburn NJ.  In the 1930’s, Ely lived in one of the new towns, Radburn NJ.  

We will tour two fully restored executive and worker homes, the Florence Hotel, the Historic Pullman Visitors Center, the new Pullman ArtSpace Lofts, the new 135,000sf Pullman Community Center, and the 180-acre redevelopment of what was the Pullman Works. The Pullman Works site now includes a shopping center, a Whole Foods distribution facility, and a Method Home Products soap factory with Gotham Greens hydroponic farm on the roof.

Tour Leaders:
Michael Shymanski (AIA Emeritus, Former Ely Chapter President) and Patricia Shymanski, both founders of the Historic Pullman Foundation. 
David Doig, President of Chicago Neighborhood Initiative and LAI member.

Lunch on your own, at the new One Eleven Food Hall in Pullman.

Richard T. Ely’s article: