45 West Belmont is a six-story, mixed-use development under construction next to the Chicago Transit Authority’s (CTA) Red, Brown and Purple Line stop on Belmont Avenue in Lakeview. The Transit Oriented Development (TOD) was designed to accommodate a mix of retail and residential in an area with high demand for new rental units.
The 37 rental units will be built on top of a podium comprising 3,400 square feet of retail at street level. The design features a side patio with outdoor café seating and a residential entranceway respecting an existing CTA easement. Among the tenant amenities is an outdoor rooftop deck with views of downtown Chicago and abundant interior bicycle storage, required by the TOD ordinance. The architecture takes inspiration from both the raw galvanized metal aesthetic of the renovated train station to the west, deconstructed from a masonry frame expression of the adjacent neighborhood to the east.
The previous zoning classification was B3-3, which required going through the City of Chicago Type-1 Zoning entitlement process to change the zoning classification to B3-5, in order to accommodate the density increase and zero parking spaces under the TOD ordinance. In addition, the transit line adjacency presented other structural and acoustical challenges that were resolved by the NORR design team. The western most bay of the structure was cantilevered with “k” bracing over the CTA easement to allow a lot line to lot line footprint above the first floor while respecting the CTA building easement at grade. The constant rattle of the adjacent train station was mitigated by utilizing triple-glazed window units for the apartments and recessed balconies within the façade utilizing saw-toothed brick cladding to disrupt the reverberation of sound bouncing off the building. An end-of-life three-story building at the site was demolished to make way for a structure and space that better serves the needs of the community.
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