5-story building to complete downtown Naperville block

Naperville City Council members have granted approval for the last new building along the Water Street block to be taller and larger than downtown zoning code typically allows.

A mixed-use facility called River Main, at the northwest corner of Water and Main streets, will be five stories and 69 feet tall on a quarter-acre site along the West Branch of the DuPage River.

The building originally gained approval in March 2017 at four stories and 52 feet, 8 inches tall - a height permitted by code.

But property owner Steve Rubin said designs had to be adjusted to make up for space on the first floor that is dedicated to utilities, delivery space and garbage collection. Those functions typically might be outside, but the building's location between the river, a road and the east side of the Hotel Indigo building at the Water Street District made that impractical, Rubin said.

"The prominence of the location of the property, with 270 degrees of visibility, calls for a really cool building, a building that my partners and I intend to build," he said, "a building that will complement the Water Street District and add to the overall culture and class of our city."

The building's roof-deck height will be 69 feet and its tallest point will be 74 feet, but the shape of the fifth story will be stepped back from the streets to make it appear less imposing. Adjacent buildings on Water Street are 61 feet, 8 inches tall to the roof deck, with highest points at 69 feet tall, according to a city memo.

The building's design includes curved glass that "picked up on the form of the river" and serves as "an entrance tool" to the Water Street area, said architect Mark Nosky, with Charles Vincent George Architects in Naperville.

Council members supported the taller building by a 7-1 vote, with council member Theresa Sullivan opposed and council member John Krummen absent.

Plans for River Main call for tenants in the retail, office and restaurant industries to complement the other uses already on the block, which include a 158-room hotel, several restaurants, a banquet center and boutiques in the $93 million Water Street project completed by Marquette Companies in 2016.

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