January 2013 Project Updates

The Vesta Accumulator Company Building, located at 2100 South Indiana in the historic Motor Row district of the South Loop, was purchased by FitzGerald’s client with the intention of converting the property into luxury loft apartments. Completed in 1913 by Chicago architect Carl Almquist, the heavy-timber building has facades of pressed face brick, Chicago common brick, and limestone with Classical Revival details.
The Vesta Accumulator Company, which occupied the building from its construction in 1913 until 1929, was a nationally-known manufacturer of batteries, headlamps, and other automobile-related electrical parts. The Vesta Accumulator Company was an important player in the development of the automobile industry along Chicago’s historic Motor Row, remaining in the late 1920’s as one of the few buildings on Motor Row where automobile-related products were actually manufactured.
FitzGerald has developed a plan to divide the space into 54 high-end loft apartments with a first-floor retail spaces, a fitness facility, and a roof deck. FitzGerald is working with MacRostie Historic Advisors to place the building on the National Register of Historic Places.
On Thursday, January 10th, the DuPage Children’s Museum officially celebrated the grand opening of its 60-seat S.M.A.R.T. Cafe with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. FitzGerald designed the café, which furthers the Museum’s 25-year mission of early learning in Science, Math, Art, Reading, and Technology by serving delicious, healthy food to more than 300,000 annual visitors in a bright, friendly learning environment designed especially for children.
“The S.M.A.R.T. Café is an extension of our mission to stimulate curiosity, creativity, and problem solving through the integration of art, math, and science,” said Susan Broad, Museum President and CEO. “But brain development needs good fuel, so we can now offer that to our members and visitors in a fun learning environment.”
The design of the S.M.A.R.T. Café is the latest of several projects on which FitzGerald has provided services to the museum, including the reconfiguring of administrative and exhibit spaces.
Construction has also been completed at two of FitzGerald’s recent retail projects, the 3,300 square foot Akira boutique that relocated as part of a new high-fashion refocus at Westfield Old Orchard Mall, and the 7,800 square foot Deb Shops at Chicago Ridge Mall (Pictured Left). At both sites, FitzGerald worked closely with corporate leadership to adapt prototype standards into store layouts and décor selections that fit the respective spaces. FitzGerald also provided outdoor façade design (Akira, Old Orchard Mall) and indoor storefront design (Deb Shops, Chicago Ridge Mall) and updated both spaces to comply with ADA accessibility.
Construction has also finished at FitzGerald’s most recent bank rehabilitation; the brand new 9,300 square foot Libertyville branch of PNC Bank includes all-new finishes, a new teller line system, reconfigured shared areas, and five new workspaces for private banking.