Chicago Architecture Info
875 North Michigan Avenue
Also known as
Big John
Formerly known as The John Hancock Center
875 North Michigan Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60611
Basic Information
Designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
Cost $95,000,000
Floors: 100
Maximum height 1,506 feet/452 meters
Neighborhood: Gold Coast
Bounding Streets:
North Michigan Avenue
East Delaware Place
North Mies Van Der Rhoe Way
East Chestnut Street
More Information
  • Height to tower roof: 1,106 feet, six inches
  • Height to penthouse roof: 1,127 feet
  • Height to top of east antenna: 1,506.25 feet
  • Size at base: 47,000 square feet
  • Size at top: 17,000 square feet
  • Steel used: 46,000 tons.
  • Designed by: Bruce J. Graham
  • Designed by: Fazlur R. Khan
  • Developer: Jerry Wolman
  • Elevators: 42
  • Stairs from the lobby to the observation deck: 1,632
  • Light tubes on the 99th floor: 555
  • Time to change crown light tubes: 40-50 hours to change the tinted sleeves over the tubes by hand
  • Parking spaces: 750
  • Office floor space: 897,000 square feet
  • Retail floor space: 171,800 square feet
  • Observation deck floor space: 17,400 square feet
  • Commercial address: 875 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60611
  • Residential address: 175 East Delaware Place, Chicago, Illinois 60611
  • 1965: Plans for the John Hancock Center are announced.
  • 1969: Construction is completed.
  • 1972: The Hancock Center is surpassed by the Standard Oil Building (now the Aon Center) as the tallest building in Chicago.
  • 1973: The residential portion of this building converts from apartments to condominiums.
  • June, 1988: A proposal was floated to build a massive $20 million, three-story atrium in front of this building. Designed by Green Hiltscher Shapiro, it would have extended all the way to the North Michigan Avenue sidewalk and had colonnades on the north and south sides of the building.
  • November 11, 1981: Stuntman Dan Goodwin climbs the outside of the building. It takes him six hours to get to the top.
  • 1989: The mall plan is scuttled by residents and critics.
  • May, 1997: The 94th floor observatory reopens after a $2.5 million renovation.
  • December 18, 1997: Comedian Chris Farley dies in his home on the 60th floor.
  • March 9, 2002: Three women were killed when a scaffold broke apart in high winds and rained debris on the street below, crushing two cars.
  • August 10, 2006: WLS Television reports the John Hancock Center could be sold.
  • 2007: This building was sold for $383 million.
  • September 2010: A new attraction was announced for the 94th floor observatory: 50x20-foot skating rink, made of a synthetic substance called "Skating in the Sky."
  • September, 2010: This building was named #1 on Chicago Magazine's list of the Top 40 Buildings in Chicago.
  • June, 2013: The office portion of this building and its parking garage were sold. Crain's Chicago Business estimated the sale price was $145 million.