Los Angeles-based CIM Group is preparing to break ground on a residential high-rise in Chicago’s Central Loop on the block it acquired in 2012 for $84 million. CIM Group bought the property after Bank of America seized the it from the previous owner, Joseph Freed & Associates LLC, as part of a foreclosure lawsuit.

Tower at Block 37CIM Group announced today that it has secured initial permits for the construction of one of the largest apartment buildings to be built on the Loop in decades.

Designed by Chicago architecture firm Solomon Cordwell Buenz & Associates Inc., the tower will rise 34-stories and contain 690 residential units above CIM Group’s existing five-level, 275,000-square-foot mall on the block bordered by State, Randolph, Dearborn and Washington streets. This will be the final phase of the development program for Block Thirty Seven.

For decades, a blighted Block 37 languished in development limbo. A pair of proposed towers and a retail mall never materialized due to the real-estate crash of 1990. For most of the nineties, the block was used as a skating rink and a student art gallery. Several development schemes were proposed but none were approved.

In 2006 Mills Corp. began building a mall on the site but quickly ran into financial problems and sold the project to Joseph Freed & Associates. Construction costs spiraled out of control and the U.S. economic collapse paved the way for the development’s eventual foreclosure.

CIM Group has struggled to fill the retail space at the mall, which opened in 2009, but they hope the residential tower will help grow the base of local customers.

Positioned on the northern portion of the block, the building will offer sweeping city views, a fifth floor amenity deck including an outdoor pool and spa, along with a rooftop spa and fitness center.