Real Estate developer Kelemen Caamano Investments and former Chicago Bear Israel Idonije engaged FitzGerald to transform 2222 South Michigan Avenue—a 1922 three-story terra cotta building that once housed the Hudson Motor Car Company in Chicago’s historic “Motor Row” landmark district—into The Hudson, a lively mixed-use apartment, boutique hotel, restaurant, and entertainment venue. Serving as design architect for the core and shell, including a fourth floor addition, FitzGerald will work alongside a collaborative team to responsibly repurpose the building while navigating requirements from the State Historic Preservation Officers (SHPO) and National Park Service (NPS).
In the historic district now experiencing a revival as a commercial, residential, and entertainment center, the renovated 2222 South Michigan Avenue will include 38 co-living units—eight of which will be designated as affordable—which accommodate up to 125 residents, 18 hotel units, a restaurant and kitchen space, a speakeasy bar, and a rooftop pool deck dining and event space. The process will involve a rigorous restoration of the historic terra cotta facade and original car dealership space along Michigan Avenue.
FitzGerald will draw on its extensive expertise in the conversion of historic buildings to incorporate all SHPO and NPS requirements for historic tax credit funding. The team will navigate such challenges as the repurposing of an existing automobile circulation ramp between levels one and two, which currently blocks key elements of the design such as a corridor used for egress, kitchen service, and direct access to the speakeasy. FitzGerald’s proposal will retain approximately 80% of the existing ramp, removing only the portion needed for the corridor, while celebrating the top part of the ramp as part of the speakeasy.
Formerly vacant for two decades, the expertly-restored South Michigan Avenue building will bring a slew of amenities and entertainment spaces to a rapidly reviving district.