Following news that Sears ?Soon to Be Willis? Tower wants to again make history-- aiming LEED and building a 50-story LEED Gold hotel in its plaza-- we tracked down DePaul econ whiz Joe Schwieterman, to offer historical insight on this legendary building.
|At Wednesday night's CREW lecture, he told us the tower always stretched city limits. A 1970?s building code allowed a 16:1 height to floor area ratio, but was amended to allow taller structures, if they includedplazas or arcades. The Sears plaza is so tiny and hard to get to, it hardly seems to fit that plan. Now there's plans for a plaza even farther away, up with the world's highest green roof, as well as to replace all 1600 plate glass windows with energy efficient panes.|
|Here we see what the future hotel and newly greened plaza. US Equities and American Landmark Properties are still in talks with several contractors. The tower's owners have been looking into going green for years and hired Adrian Smith (Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architects), a super tall building specialist with projects around the world. Adrian says he hopes to set a new standard for sustainability on the $350M project.|