Legacy at Millennium Park
60 East Monroe Street, Chicago, IL
|Legacy at Millennium Park|
The Legacy at Millennium Park
|Developer||Mesa Development LLC and Walsh Investors|
|Architect||Solomon, Cordwell, Buenz|
|Management Company||Draper and Kramer Incorporated|
|Number of Units||356|
|Number of Floors||72|
|Type of Roof||IRMA|
|60 East Monroe Street, Chicago, IL|
|Distance to Public Transit||Over 60 options nearby|
|Title of Land||Condominium|
The Legacy at Millennium Park is a sleek 72 story glass walled residential condominium skyscraper in Chicago, located at 60 East Monroe Street. It was developed by Mesa Development LLC and Walsh Investors after they purchased the land it now stands on from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. This controversial purchase was repelled by preservation groups such as Landmarks Illinois and Preservation Chicago who have for mandate to preserve Chicago's historic landmarks.
However, working with the school and the University Club, the developers negotiated clauses to protect views of Millennium Park and Lake Michigan and assure the preservation of three historic masonry and terracotta building façades on protected Jeweler's Row District along Wabash Avenue. 
Currently the tallest residential building in Chicago, the Legacy also houses 41,000 square feet of classroom space for the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the lower floors, athletic facilities for the University Club, a sky-bridge between the University Club and the building podium as well as its resident's private amenities. There are two outdoor sky gardens with lounges located on the 42nd and 60th floors in addition to a landscaped terrace and sundeck on the 15th floor.
It is home to 356 luxurious condominiums and 460 parking spaces accessible via a dedicated elevator entrance located on floors four through twelve. Its award-winning contemporary architecture was conceptualized by Solomon, Cordwell, Buenz who are also responsible for the Heritage at Millennium Park. 
The residential units begin on the 15th floor and above. Their private balconies give the residents panoramic views of Millennium Park, Lake Michigan downtown Chicago also called the Loop. On the 13th floor of the building, the sky bridge connected to the University Club of Chicago gives the Legacy home owners access to guest rooms, catered events, and even squash courts.
The Legacy at Millennium Park is located along South Wabash Avenue, on East Monroe Street in the Loop community area of Chicago. It is in the heart of The Jewelers Row District that was designated a Chicago Landmark on July 9, 2003. This historic neighborhood is sandwiched between East Washington Street and East Monroe Street.
The original buildings in the area were established between 1872 and 1941 and were the creation of many notable architects including: Graham, Anderson, John Mills Van Osdel, Adler & Sullivan and Alfred Alschuler to name a few. Although most façades were preserved, the majority of those buildings have been converted into residential lofts, skyscrapers or modern office buildings.
The Jewelers Row District is a unique part of Chicago's famous downtown shopping district centered on State Street and Wabash Avenue. In 1912 the Mallers Building at 5 South Wabash began to house jewelry manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers. By World War II, the most important Chicago firms, like Sherman Tucker and M. Y. Finkelman, had located there. Finkelman's son Marshall brought international fame to the Chicago jewelry trade in international gem markets and opened the Jewelers' Mall in the late 1980s at 21 North Wabash.
In the last two decades of the twentieth century, jewelers from Mexico, South America, and Southeast Asia brought new ethnic trends to Jewelers' Row. In 2002, plans to convert the 5 S. Wabash building into condominiums forced many jewelers to find new locations away from Jewelers' Row.
The district is also known for its association with the economic and social history of Chicago since the first decade of the twentieth century of jewelry manufacturing and trade, silver manufacturing, and watch manufacturing and repair in Chicago. These typically small-scale, entrepreneurial businesses traditionally have occupied both ground floor storefronts and upper floor offices in the district's buildings. The Legacy is located at only half a block west of the Park and at proximity to countless of restaurants, entertainment options, art venues, shopping, cultural attractions and many schools.
The legacy is a modern concrete skyscraper with a caisson foundation and a curtain wall glass facade. Its construction started in January 2007 and was completed in 2010. The Legacy's first three floors are dedicated to retail and school space, as well as the city’s elevated train (the “El”). Above the third floor, the restored historic façades hides a multi-level parking garage.
The ground level façades of the historic Sharp Building, immediately south of the site, were also restored. In order to not disturb the existing urban fabric the tower was set back 30 feet from the historic street facades. From Wabash, the 1.2 million-square foot tower looks like it sits on Michigan Avenue, while from Michigan Avenue it looks like it sits on Wabash Avenue.
The almost triangular floor plan maximizes the number of units with views of Millennium Park and Lake Michigan to the east, and the tapered point of the plan provides an extremely narrow profile for the tower when viewed from the park.
Layout and Features
With suites ranging from 800 to 5,000 square feet and three types of residences, the Legacy tower offers several layouts and features to its residents. The high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows allow each unit to have panoramic views of Millennium Park, Lake Michigan, Grant Park or the city.
Each unit has a unique layout but most have an open layout in the living room and kitchen. The building is equipped with a bicycle room, storage locker for each residence, four high speed passenger elevators and one dedicated freight elevator, a secure indoor garage and a granite and wood-paneled lobby with a seating area and fireplace.
The Legacy tower offers three types of residences: Park, Skyline and Millennium. These condominiums range from 800 to up to 5,000 square feet of living space.
- Park Residences: one bedroom, one bedroom plus den or two bedroom residences
- Skyline Residences: one bedroom plus den, two or three bedrooms
- Millennium Residences: two bedrooms plus den, three bedrooms or three bedrooms plus den
The Legacy at Millennium Park has many luxurious and exclusive amenities which include hospitality rooms with sky-garden terraces and access to certain facilities and services of the adjacent University Club of Chicago. Here is a list of them:
- Heated indoor lap pool
- Whirlpool spa
- 15th floor sundeck
- Landscaped outdoor garden terrace
- Fitness center with personal training
- 42nd and 60th floor outdoor sky garden lounges with hospitality rooms
- Certain University Club privileges available to Legacy unit owners at a discounted initiation fees(The University Club is an independent private-membership club with admission governed by its own policies and bylaws)
- 24-hour doorman
- Package receiving and valet dry cleaning service
- On-site management office
- Hospitality rooms
- Five restaurants for casual and formal dining
- Squash courts
- 460 Parking spaces 
|Legacy at Millennium Park Bylaws|
- This building allows pets
- Rentals are allowed
- There is no age restrictions
- Barbecues are allowed
The Legacy follows the LEED guidelines.
Its green roof was used as a lab to try new ideas and concepts for the City of Chicago and is now one of the highest in the United States. With the city planners believing green spaces within the vertical neighborhood would improve the residents’ experience, the Legacy designers took that opportunity to incorporate sky gardens into its design. These green public areas are the high rise equivalent a park and can be found on the 15th, 42nd and 60th floors.
The Legacy is fully clad with a thermally efficient unitized curtain wall featuring “low-E” and argon-filled insulating glass units. The design of the high performance skin features floor to ceiling glass and operable windows for abundant natural interior lighting and ventilation which makes the building more efficient in both hot and cool temperatures as compared to traditional exposed concrete and punched window buildings of a similar size and scale. Photo-voltaic cells on the top three floors offset some of the energy used by the Legacy’s exterior decorative lighting system.
Richard Hanson, CEO of Mesa Development, believes the Legacy addresses sustainability by adding density to downtown without taking even one square foot of ground level space. Having people move to an urban area is very important. He advances that taking 356 residences in a suburban area would take up approximately 150 acres for the houses alone and with the roads, streets, arterial living it adds up to four to five hundred acres land that can be salvaged with only one building.
Also, living in the downtown core of Chicago brings residents closer to extensive public transportation and allows them to access work and daily errands, without having to use a car. Its location also gives the Legacy the opportunity to connect to the Chicago’s chilled water system, Thermal Chicago, eliminating the need for three 600-ton water chillers and associated cooling towers on the building roof. This means the building is supplied with 56°F (13°C) water to be used as a source for temperature control. In addition to the elimination of chillers or tanks on the roof, the heating/cooling system uses no chemicals, dumps nothing into the waste water system and significantly reduced mechanical noise and heat dissipation on site.
- Walt Disney was born in Chicago in 1901. He studied drawing at Chicago's McKinley High School and the Institute of Fine Arts.
- The first all-color TV station debuted in Chicago (Channel 5).
- The world's first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Company, was built in 1885 in Chicago.
- Chicago has the largest collection of Impressionist paintings outside of Paris.
- The Jewelers Center has over 190 jewelers.
- The Legacy at Millennium Park is the 242nd tallest building in the world.
- Lake Michigan is the third largest of the Five Great Lakes and the only one entirely within the United States.
- The Legacy at Millennium Park Official Website
- The Legacy on Wikipedia
- The Jewelers Row District on Wikipedia
- The Legacy on Emporis
- The University Club
- The Legacy on Draper and Kramer Inc.
- International Journal of Tall buildings and Urban Habitat
- Choose Chicago
- The Jewelers Center
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