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CHICAGO-Magellan Development Group has begun condominium deliveries at its $475 million Aqua. Buyers began closings last week in the 262-unit condo component of the 82-story mixed-use development at 225 N. Columbus Drive. The Aqua project exists within the larger $4-billion Lakeshore East mixed-use development, which spans 28 acres along Lake Michigan between the Chicago River and Millennium Park.

“We have in effect a village in the heart of the city, as opposed to a single building, and people like that because we’re giving them a unique community and amenity package,” Joel Carlins, co-CEO of Magellan Development, tells GlobeSt.com. “We’re ahead of most of the other markets and haven’t had the same impact from the recession.” Amenities include access to indoor and outdoor pools, a hot tub, indoor basketball court, outdoor deck, running track, fire pit and barbecues, a yoga area and spa.

Beginning on floor 53, the condos range in size from studio to three bedrooms, average around 1,200 square feet and have sold for about $525 per square foot. Carlins says 240 of the 262 units, or about 92%, have been sold, and sales are continuing with contracts pending on two more units. Designed by Jeanne Gang of Studio/Gang Architects, the Aqua building is also hoped to gain LEED certification.

On floors 19 to 52, the 474-unit apartment component offers studios and one, two and three bedroom rental units averaging around 1,300 square feet, with rental rates ranging from $1375 to $3111. “Our rentals at Aqua are also going fabulous,” Carlins says. “We started May 1 renting, and we’re already 60% preleased.”

This is Magellan’s third development of apartments in Lakeshore East, following The Shoreham in 2004 with 548 units and The Tides last year with 608 apartments. The two properties are around 90% leased. Earlier this month, it was announced that Aqua will be managed by Chicago-based Community Specialists, which also manages Magellan’s 300-unit The Chandler at Lakeshore East condo building.

CVS/pharmacy has signed on with a 20-year lease to anchor the 37,000-square-foot retail component of the tower with a 12,000-square-foot ground level location. Magellan will take nearly all of the development’s 40,000 square feet of office space. The developer has still yet to name the hotel which is planned to bring up to 310 rooms into space below floor 19, Magellan has said. Having been in discussions with several hotels to fill the spot, Magellan expects to announce a deal in the near future.

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