Chicago Spire, world’s tallest building, in foreclosure

The Chicago Spire site and unfinished development

The Irish government will soon own the Chicago Spire site and unfinished development where one of the tallest buildings in the world was set to rise.

Anglo Irish Bank now owned by the government has filed a $77 million foreclosure suit against the Irish developer, Garrett Kelleher, who had set out to build the Spire.

There has been no work done on the downtown Chicago site for over two years now, despite continued claims by Kelleher that he had the funding to finish the site which was due to rise 2,000 feet on North Shore Drive.

Documents filed by the bank show that Kelleher has made no repayments in over a year and there is now a suspicion that he is bankrupt.
He is known to have invested $194 million of his own money into the Spire project which he took over from another developer who ran out of funds. The foundations of the building were being constructed when work stopped.

An attempt to do a deal with Chicago area building unions also failed when union leaders, anxious to find construction jobs for their members briefly considered lending the money from their pension funds. However that idea fell through.

Garrett Kelleher is a deeply conservative Catholic  who is on the board of regents of  Ava Maria University in Florida . He was chairman of St.Patrick’s Athletic soccer club in Dublin and said he would turn them into a European footballing power which never happened.