Mid-Century Modern Morton Salt Headquarters Building to be Demolished

The mid-century modern Morton Salt Headquarters Building will be demolished to make way for a new office skyscraper. Designed by Shaw, Metz & Dolio, this five-story building has been a fixture at 110 North Wacker Drive since its completion in 1961. It was commissioned by Morton Salt Company, a long-standing Chicago company founded in since 1879. Morton Salt Company eventually morphed into an international conglomerate and left the building in 1992. More recently, General Growth Properties occupied the building.

110 North Wacker Drive will be replaced by 51-story glass office tower designed by Goettsch Partners and developed by Dallas-based Howard Hughes Company and Chicago’s Riverside Investment and Development. Bank of America will be the anchor tenant.

The development plan includes a half-acre publicly accessible open space, including a landscaped river walk and an urban park. The new 45-foot wide river walk will serving as a new north-south connection for pedestrian access between Randolph Street and Washington Street.

At a recent Section 106 meeting, Preservation Chicago advocated for a reconsideration of the proposed demolition, citing the building’s history, integrity, scale and relationship to the development of Chicago. Also noting that the scale of the riverfront is being overwhelmed with tall, glass buildings, and the history of Wacker Drive’s transformation from Market Street is being lost.

We also noted in the meeting, that other nearby riverfront buildings, including the Hartford Insurance Building at 100 S. Wacker Drive by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (1961), and 10 and 120 S. Riverside Plaza Buildings also by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (1968 and 1974), along with 2 N. Riverside Plaza also known as the Chicago Daily News Building by Holabird & Root (1928) should be considered for Landmark Designation.

Additional Reading
800-foot riverfront tower proposed to replace Chicago’s old General Growth Building, Jay Koziarz, Curbed Chicago, 1/18/17

An ode to the humblest building on Wacker, Joe Cahill, Crain’s Chicago Business, 7/25/14

General Growth Properties – Morton Salt Company Building, by: chicago designslinger, 3/7/15

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