Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow Influencing O’Hare Airport

It’s been nearly a century and a half since Mrs. O’Leary’s cow started the Great Chicago Fire, but the animal is still influencing construction going on at O’Hare airport. Since the Great Fire, Chicago has extremely stringent fire safety when it comes to free standing towers. The $28 million South Air Traffic Control Tower will need to have two enclosed fire escape stairwells which has made the design challenging. Chicago construction news has a great article here. O’Leary, O’Hare, O’My!


Water Tower Hall Of Fame

Midwest Wrecking Company specializes in removing water towers and structures. Our five decades of experience ensures that we’ll complete your project safely and on budget. We are especially adept at clearing away tanks that are still functioning and are difficult to access.

Here are some water tanks that we would hate to remove:


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Things Are Looking Up for the Historic Otis Elevator Warehouse

Things are looking up (sorry) for the historic Otis Elevator Warehouse located in the city’s Pilsen neighborhood. DNA Info reports that a plan is underway to transform the vacant 130,000 square foot building into a multi-unit residential structure.

According to DNA Info:

The warehouse, originally constructed in phases between 1900 and 1905 by the Otis Elevator Co., was used for the manufacturing of elevator cabs, according to Cedar Street. The building, located just north of the BNSF railroad tracks and the Pilsen neighborhood, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Speaking of elevators, if you need to remove an elevator shaft safely and cost effectively, call Midwest Wrecking Company at 312-666-1043. We’ve been Chicago’s Wrecking Crew since 1952.


Who Wants To Buy A Chicago Icon?

chi-tribtower-p-20120711Up till just a few weeks ago, if you wanted to buy the Chicago Tribune building you would have had to settle for a four inch replica sold in souvenir gift shops. Not anymore. Earlier this month, Tribune Media announced that the landmarked neo-Gothic building, which houses the Chicago Tribune and other tenants is up for sale. The thirty six story building, located on perhaps, the most scenic stretch of land in the loop has been an iconic part of Chicago’s skyline for ninety years.

No word on what the listing price will be or if you’ll get the Sunday edition free with purchase.


Lucky 21: Almost Two Dozen Highrises Currently Under Construction in Chicago

Highrises seem to be all the rage in Chicago. Currently there are 21 high-rises under construction within the city limits. What’s great for the construction industry might spell trouble for the rental market. While estimates vary, the building boom may produce up to 5,000 new rental/condo units. Are we heading towards a rental bubble in the next few years? 

One of our favorite blogs, Curbed Chicago has a great wrap-up of what’s going on:




Housing Growth Equals Profound Shortage Of Construction Workers

Good News: United States housing starts have increased 11.3% so far in 2015, while commercial construction spending is up 9.7% in the first half of this year.

Now the bad news: So many construction workers left the field during the recession, that almost 70% of construction companies are having trouble finding enough skilled construction workers.

Now the very bad news, there is no end in site. Laborers are not returning to the construction workforce as the talent pool has dried up. So many schools and apprenticeship programs were closed during the downturn that few qualified young laborers are being taught valued skills.

If this trend continues, this could have serious ramifications in future construction growth.


Chicago Magazine: How Much Is Your Home Worth?

Chicago Magazine has published median home prices for all Chicago neighborhoods. Their analysis taken from chicagomag.com

Call it a classic case of too much too soon: After zooming more than 9 percent in 2013 and 5 percent last year, median home values in the six-county metro area should level off with just a 0.5 percent increase in 2015, predicts Skylar Olsen, a senior economist at the real estate research firm Zillow. (Many other metro areas, such as Boston and New York, also have a virtually flat forecast for the year.) The message: If you want to sell now but wondered if you should wait another year to benefit from rising prices, go ahead and list. And if you’re a buyer, you’ll have plenty of time to shop around. See how your area stacks up on these charts, which include price data for neighborhoods and suburbs with 20 or more sales in 2014.

The full report and stats are available at http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/April-2015/chicago-real-estate/home-condo-prices?show=hoods&sortby=name&attached=false


July 2015 Construction over $1B Annual Rate

From Chicagolandconstruction.com:

The U.S. Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce announced today that construction spending during July 2015 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,083.4 billion, 0.7 percent (±1.5%)* above the revised June estimate of $1,075.9 billion. The July figure is 13.7 percent (±2.0%) above the July 2014 estimate of $952.5 billion.

During the first 7 months of this year, construction spending amounted to $583.2 billion, 9.3 percent (±1.5%) above the $533.7 billion for the same period in 2014.

Spending on private construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $787.8 billion, 1.3 percent (±1.0%) above the revised June estimate of $777.4 billion. Residential construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $380.8 billion in July, 1.1 percent (±1.3%)* above the revised June estimate of $376.6 billion. Nonresidential construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $407.0 billion in July, 1.5 percent (±1.0%) above the revised June estimate of $400.8 billion.

In July, the estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate of public construction spending was $295.6 billion, 1.0 percent (±2.6%)* below the revised June estimate of $298.5 billion. Educational construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $66.4 billion, 3.0 percent (±3.5%)* below the revised June estimate of $68.4 billion. Highway construction was at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $90.3 billion, 0.2 percent (±6.6%)* below the revised June estimate of $90.5 billion.

August 2015 data will be released on October 1, 2015 at 10:00 A.M. EDT.