The Cubic Zirconium Coast

The northern reaches of Chicago’s lakefront offer relatively affordable lakeside living, via a series of massive highrises that went up in the 1960s along Sheridan Road. One particularly big cluster stands south of Loyola University, where Sheridan meets Granville.

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Some of them have their merits. Others… less so.

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But at least two are of some interest.

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6166 N. Sheridan – the Granville Tower – derives interest from its remarkable zigzag balconies. Modernistic bay windows protrude from the west face, as though the building’s framework couldn’t quite contain all the activity within. Emporis lists the architect as Seymour S. Goldstein (1920-2006 – the same guy who designed the Second City building and incorporated the salvaged terra cotta from Louis Sullivan’s demolished Garrick Theater into it), and notes that all the condos within are two-level units.

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Across the street, the El Lago condominiums (6157 N. Sheridan) present a serene, handsomely composed facade to the street… even if the building’s broad face is just another sea of undifferentiated brick and glass.

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Down at the entrance, a couple of slick little tile mosaics provide some liveliness and color, along with a handsome font for the building’s name.

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Emporis gives the name of Irving M. Karlin Associates as the architect, and dates the building to 1959. Mr. Karlin lived from 1902 to 1993.

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4 thoughts on “The Cubic Zirconium Coast

  1. I always thought that Granville Tower was a monstrosity, but the units might be nice on the inside if they are all duplexes. Emporis also mentions that it is "[t]aller than any building farther north in Chicago" which you wouldn't expect.

  2. Robert: If you get a chance, check out the lobby at Shoreline Towers (6301 N. Sheridan). It's … interesting, and I don't necessarily mean that in a bad way.

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