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Water Tower Place


Water Tower Place


Structure in General

existing [completed]
caisson foundation
applied masonry
light gray
flat roof with 1 box


residential condominium hotel shopping center
cinema parking


  • The podium contains a shopping mall anchored by Macy's and American Girl Place. The tower houses a Ritz Carlton Hotel, offices, and condominiums.
  • The shopping mall is centered around an eight story terraced atrium with the most famous elevators in Chicago, housed in three bundled hexagonal glass tubes.
  • When the mall was built it had enough shopping space to contain all existing stores on Michigan Avenue from the river to Oak Street.
  • World's tallest reinforced concrete building from 1975 to 1990; surpassed by 311 South Wacker, also in Chicago.
  • In 2002 the entrance was renovated and show windows were inserted into the facade above the arcade.
  • Named after the Chicago Water Tower across Michigan Avenue to the southwest.
  • The shopping center was the first of three large indoor malls built near the Water Tower. The others are at 900 North Michigan and Chicago Place.
  • The main entrance to the mall is a two-story set of escalators, with a waterfall between them and winding staircases at the sides.
  • The 12-story Pearson Hotel was demolished to make way for Water Tower Place. It stood at the southeast corner of the site.
  • Part of the site was bought from the John Hancock Center, with an easement restricting the tower to the southeast corner of the lot to preserve the Hancock's views.
  • Construction was unexpectedly delayed several weeks when foundation workers discovered an underground stream on the site. The water was plugged by building a giant concrete dome under the building.

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More Information


845 North Michigan Avenue
150-200 East Pearson Street
850 North Mies van der Rohe Drive, 151-199 East Chestnut Street
845 North Michigan Avenue
Near North Side

Technical Data

859.18 ft
859.18 ft
859.18 ft

Involved Companies

C.F. Murphy Associates

C.F. Murphy Associates
concrete supplier, consultant, developer, elevator supplier, escalator supplier, facade maintenance system supplier, facade supplier, general contractor, interior designer, lighting consultant, lightning protection, owner, parking management, property management, shell construction, tenant

Features & Amenities

  • One of the city's famous buildings
  • Atrium is present
  • Doorman is available
  • Fountain is present in building
  • Panoramic elevators are present
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