35 East Wacker Drive is a 40-story landmark office building located in downtown Chicago on the northwest corner of East Wacker Drive and Wabash Avenue, facing the Chicago River.
Known as The Jewelers' Building, 35 East Wacker Drive was originally designed and built in the 1920's as a high tech office tower for jewelers. The lower 23 floors were serviced by automobile elevators that, for security reasons, transported the tenant, their jewels, and their car directly up to the office floor. Changing times reduced the utility of this machinery and the elevator shafts were subsequently filled in.
At the time of its construction, 35 East Wacker Drive was the tallest building west of New York City. It is easily distinguished on the Chicago skyline by its "wedding cake" shape and the water towers visible at the four corners of the first set back (part of the original fire suppression system - now decommissioned). The top of the Building is a large dome which was originally a restaurant and it is said to have been frequented by Al Capone during Prohibition. The Building is designated a Chicago landmark.
Recently, ownership initiated a multi-year, multi-million dollar renovation to bring the property up to contemporary Class A standards. The interior of the building is being entirely re-built on a floor-by-floor basis with only the historic facade and structure remaining in place.
The Building core has been reconfigured around a centrally located services shaft - creating modern floor plates ideally sized and suited to mid-sized office users. New "best-in-class" electrical, mechanical, elevator, plumbing and life safety systems have been installed. The storefronts, lobby and elevator cabs have been meticulously restored. The Building now offers modern functionality in a prestige heritage space.
The property re-development has received awards including a top award from the Chicago chapter of the American Institute of Architects (the "Interior Architecture Citation of Merit" for Excellence in Architecture 2006) and the "2006 Chicago Landmark Award for Preservation Excellence - Exterior and Interior Rehabilitation" from the City of Chicago.
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