Auto Landmark: Chicago Motor Club Building- Vacant Art Deco Highrise

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How sad is this title? 17 stories of glory, with car elevators and a full drive-up garage system, on prime real estate of Wacker Drive in Chicago?

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Last we checked, 68 South Water Street was owned by a consortium of flustered real estate investors. Hotel conversion plans have backfired, and there are rumblings that the building … may not be inhabitable.

Too bad. Look at this penthouse sun room. Vacant for the last 30 years, at least.

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Built over 80 years ago, bringing this masterclass in Art Deco architecture up to code seems to be prohibitively expensive at the moment.

But some time in the future, the Chicago Motor Club building will hopefully reclaim her former glory: as…

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A car dealer with the key to America’s West.

To Map your road trip in advance, a huge map of America forms the Western lobby wall. Driving long distance by car was new to many families, and the AAA helped along the way to get America rolling.

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Enjoy all these images of the Chicago Motor Club Building, including one of my Subaru Legacy GT in its “Batman” parking space.


When my office was across the street, this open concrete drew me like a Siren ISO free parking.

Renting this parking space to myself was very roomy with no door dings… for only $200 a month and a 4-digit padlock code. But I was always being blocked in by hotel work trucks in Chicago’s (awesome) underground loading-dock delivery system of Lower Wacker Drive.

Exterior Gallery – Chicago Motor Club Building

Interior Gallery – Chicago Motor Club Building