Redefining legacy in Chicago hot spot on the river: Wolf Point
Three towers soar above the confluence of the Chicago River, enriching the community with visionary, sustainable design
What's the Point?
A trio of world-class office and MF towers now grace one of the most important sites in Chicago's history- the Wolf Point neighborhood. Masterfully planned by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects to create an urban oasis, Wolf Point delights the senses with its striking design, lush, expansive gardens, and sweeping skyline views.
Wolf Point: Three breathtaking buildings, one historic home
Perched in the premier remaining riverfront site at the epicenter of in-demand downtown neighborhoods and transit options, Wolf Point represents the future of sought-after live, work, play environments — while serving a powerful tribute to the historic significance of its location.
The site is created by the confluence of the three branches of the Chicago River, a landmark where early explorers and traders landed thanks to its close proximity to the riverbank, helping shape Chicago’s history. Since then, it has endured as a gathering place for people and goods moving through the city. In the early part of the 19th century, river settlers established Chicago’s first tavern, hotel, and drug store here.
In the 1940s, Joseph Kennedy bought the land. His grandson, Chris Kennedy of Wolf Point Owners, takes deep pride in helping usher in an auspicious new era here.
“If you’re part of Wolf Point you’re part of that legacy, you’re part of that history,” says Kennedy. “We’ve taken our time because we’ve wanted to do for the city what it has done for the Kennedy family. We knew we needed to do something great.”
When project leaders initially met with architects, they knew they’d found the dream partner in Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects.
“What [they] talked about, more than anyone else, is the human element. How does the building interact with the neighborhood? With the city itself? But more importantly – with individuals at the ground level?” says Kennedy.1
Wolf Point: The new standard in placemaking
At its core, Wolf Point is a prime example of Hines’ commitment to creating towers that enrich the communities where they stand. Wolf Point invites wonder from the ground up, for residents, visitors, and passersby alike.
“If you look at where the building (Wolf Point East) meets the ground, and the way it meets the sky it’s almost exactly the same set of shapes,” says Fred Clarke of Pelli Clarke Pelli. “That’s an invention. It’s almost as if it’s a cloud, floating above the park. So it’s the opposite of the gravity and weight of big buildings in typical circumstances.”
Inside, each building is thoughtfully planned so that view corridors are preserved. At all times, a sense of dynamic energy permeates Wolf Point, thanks to its artful blend of residential, office and public spaces.
Green inside and out, the construction team reduced carbon emissions in Salesforce Tower Chicago by 19% by creating specific concrete mixes and thoughtful sourcing of structural steel. The building is on track for LEED® Gold certification as part of Hines’ focus on sustainable buildings.
Outside, beautifully landscaped green grounds await, complete with a 1,000-foot extension of the Chicago Riverwalk. The four-acre urban park, directly on the river, features cherry blossom trees, terraced gardens and comfortable seating. Wolf Point’s inviting riverwalk doubles as an anchor to help retain the river’s natural edge, in turn supporting the natural habitat and local wildlife.