Spotted! Potain crane high above Chicago city streets

The MR 415 crane was erected on one of the US city’s central streets

PHOTO: Credit:

Construction work in a busy city like Chicago requires ingenuity, as there just isn’t much space to erect equipment, especially a crane. However, by employing a tie-in solution, a Potain MR 415 has been erected on one of the city’s central streets, using an existing building as a foundation.

Construction began in 2014 to make better use of the space, adding a 34-storey apartment building on top of the existing five-story complex. In June 2014, the Potain MR 415 began lifting work on the tower. Known for its versatility, the MR415 allows crane bases to be interchangeable with Potain’s MD and MDT cranes, enabling several different internal and external climbing crane configurations.

The tight working quarters required the use of a luffing tower crane, and the MR 415 was an ideal fit with its 26.5t capacity and ability to tie in via several different configurations.

With a lack of space below for a spread foundation, the crane was tied in at the fifth floor, at a height of 24m during the initial assembly, to reduce the foundation reactions. The MR 415 has been lifting construction materials for the job, the heaviest being 10t at heights of up to 142m.

When complete, the new apartment building will have 690 apartment units, making it one of the tallest apartment buildings constructed in Chicago’s Loop in decades. The structure will include an outdoor pool and spa, rooftop spa and fitness centre.


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