Developer: Lows Point will contain shops on the ground floor, 10 beautiful apartments upstairs
WNLP’s Beth Boardman Story
(Click on the photos to enlarge)
It started as Cohen and Low Furnishing and Goods in the 1870s, then was a downtown staple as Lows Clothing until the late 20th century. Under new ownership thereafter, it became It’s a Wonderful Life Antiques, and then was filled with these antiques for years after it closed. Recently the antiques were auctioned off and the building was empty. Now the old place has a whole new future.
Tommy Viere, president of Material Architecture Corporation in Chicago, spotted the Lows building at 708 Lincoln Way during one of his visits to friends who live in the area. As an architect / designer / builder whose family owns and operates over 900 apartments, Viere is drawn to these sites.
âMy family and I specialize in renovating struggling, value-added multi-family real estate across Chicago, neighboring suburbs and northwest Indiana,â he told WNLP.
Viere likes the historical context of the building, âand the ability to preserve it for the enjoyment of future generations appealed to me. This development harnesses all the skills and knowledge that I have developed throughout my career.
As a development of Lows Point, the building will contain shops on the ground floor (retail has not yet been selected, but Viere is marketing the site locally and nationally). The upper floors will feature 10 upscale apartments, “most with outdoor terraces and covered parking,” Viere said. âIn addition, there will be a laundry room, heating and air conditioning in the unit, interior skylights and full equipment (dishes, microwave, etc.).
âThe apartments will be upscale style with historic charm,â he continued. âRents are currently estimated between $ 850 and $ 1,050 depending on the size of the apartment (units with 1 to 2 beds) and the location.
Viere expects the building to be ready for retail this winter and for residents in the winter of 2022. He noted that there is already a lot of interest in the apartments.
âWe had to develop a waiting list due to current inquiries,â he told WNLP.
While Viere and his wife currently live in Chicago, “we are patiently waiting for the right opportunity to move into the community of La Porte.”
The community is another reason he decided to develop the Lows site.
âEveryone is friendly and helpful! He raved. âLakes and parks! Trails and bike paths! The historic city center – the architecture is magnificent!
âYou can tell as you drive and walk that everyone at La Porte takes great pride in where they live – the streets and yards are clean, the neighborhood is safe and the American flags are everywhere! “
He added that the city leaders were enthusiastic and helpful. âMayor Dermody, working with Bert Cook and Mike Riehle of LEAP, impresses me with the way they strive to ensure the success of La Porte now and in the future,â said Viere.
For more information on Material Architecture Corporation, where Lows Point is one of the featured developments, visit https://www.materarc.com.