The group of developers, builders, property managers and maybe even advertising pros would oversee not only the six-block section of the Riverwalk that's under construction along the south side of the river between State and Lake streets, but also the existing portion between
The details are found in recently released, 343-page city bid documents that ask would-be Riverwalk firms to offer their plans by
"Construction of this new amenity is expected to be substantially completed in 2016," the documents state. "The new build-out will permit a continuous riverside pedestrian trail from
The developer would help the city cover some of its loan payments with money from the stores, restaurants, concessions, entertainment facilities and recreational boat docking. In addition, the city likely would try to repay the rest with fees from tour boats, event sponsorships, naming rights and advertising along adjacent streets, according to the bid documents.
The city is open to various ways to split up the pie with the management group, including "incentive payments, a long-term lease with an upfront payment or an alternative structure that meets the city's requirements for a long-term partnership."
To sell the idea to potential developers, Mayor
"With over 100,000 square feet of commercial development opportunity, the Chicago Riverwalk is a great example of how successfully creating land will capture future value," the documents state. "The Chicago Riverwalk is a transformative place-making opportunity to activate the historically significant
Considering the sometimes brutal winters that feature brisk, chilly winds along the river, the year-round component may be a tough sell, something the city concedes. "In climates with weather uncertainty, some architectural designs that are becoming popular include tenting, retractable roofing, patio enclosures and adaptable awnings," according to the bid documents.
The idea of a cleaner, more attractive river fit for recreational use was first envisioned decades ago, with the late Mayor
Additional development could be added to the already built portion, including adding a second story to the space now housing
Plans for the new portion, which were first revealed in
Also called for in the new bid documents are "sustainable practices" such as using native plants and salvaging existing architectural elements.
The team that's chosen would be responsible for "commercial build-out, leasing, programming, marketing and operation of the Riverwalk." The
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