A corner long associated with Al Capone (and Geraldo Rivera) may soon have people thinking of green urban living instead. The Lexington Park Condominiums, under construction at Cermak Road and South Michigan Avenue, is the first U.S. project of the Irish developer Chieftain.

According to the building’s lead architect, Jeff Hrubec (of the Chicago-based VOA Associates), the asymmetrical 35-story building will have a green roof, concrete and curtain wall glass from local providers (to reduce transportation needs), and extra-deep, shade-providing balconies that will reduce the demand for air conditioning in the summer. That doesn’t mean the building has eschewed a contemporary design. “You don’t have to build a mud hut to build sustainably,” Hrubec says.

South Loop

From $239,900
to $521,900

Inside, the condos will feature Energy Star appliances, cabinets and floors made from sustainably grown parawood (from the rubber tree) and bamboo, and lots of daylight to help reduce the electrical load. The smallest condos (745 square feet) start at $239,900; the largest (1,345 square feet) go for as much as $521,900. A parking space costs an additional $35,000. Occupancy begins in late 2008.

Photograph: Courtesy of CMK Realty Corporation