Rendition of what the new Harper Court could look like (Architect's Newspaper)
Cool story from The Architect’s Newspaper, about three city neighborhoods in the midst of a development boom. One of those ‘hoods is Hyde Park.
“Hyde Park is very much a company town,” said Peter Cassel, director of community development for Antheus Capital, which owns more property in the neighborhood than anyone except the University of Chicago. “As the University grows, so too does the neighborhood.”
It follows then that as the University announced plans to revitalize commercial activity along its 53rd street corridor in 2008 with a project called Harper Court, Antheus revealed plans for its own 500,000-square-foot mixed-use development, City Hyde Park, at 51st Street and South Harper Avenue.
Both plans drew mixed public comments. While many residents welcome the new retail, “we’ve heard a very strong desire to retain what people currently like and find special about Hyde Park,” Cassel said. “The challenge for us is to maintain that balance.”
Harper Court and Antheus’ City Hyde Park project are the twin hubs of an apparent development boom that also includes University acquisitions of a former Borders Bookstore building as well as the renovation of commercial and theater buildings along 53rd Street. Antheus, for its part, is also converting two historic hotels into apartment buildings and building a new mixed-use project called City Hyde Park with the help of Aqua Tower architects Studio Gang.