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Salesforce announces 1,000 new jobs, tower in River North

A rendering of Salesforce Tower Chicago, which was announced Friday, Nov. 30. | Image by Steelblue

A rendering of Salesforce Tower Chicago, which was announced Friday, Nov. 30. | Image by Steelblue

Tech juggernaut Salesforce announced Friday that it will add 1,000 new jobs here over the next five years as part of the expansion of its regional headquarters, which includes the construction of Salesforce Tower Chicago in River North.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, businessman Chris Kennedy, Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd ) and the project’s architects were among those at Friday’s event at 444 W, Lake.

Elizabeth Pinkham, executive vice president of real estate for the San Francisco-based Salesforce, said the cloud-based software company would also donate $1 million to Chicago Public Schools.  Pinkham also said the use of the tower’s top floor –– the “Ohana Floor” –– will be available for free to employees, customers and partners, nonprofits and local education groups on weeknights and weekends.

The 57-story structure, on the site formerly known as Wolf Point South, is part of a larger three-tower project. Salesforce Tower is slated to open in 2023.

The building is designed by award-winning architects Pelli Clarke Pelli, and developed by the Kennedy family and the real estate investment firm Hines.

Emanuel, on Friday, praised Kennedy for his “vision” for the site, which was empty for decades.

“Today we announce the third tower of that dream in just eight years and I want to congratulate and thank the Kennedy family for seeing that through … [this] symbolizes all the things that are happening in the city of Chicago and economic opportunity and the revitalization of the city,” Emanuel said.

Earlier this year, things were a bit more tense between the two men when Kennedy –– then a Democratic gubernatorial candidate –– accused the mayor of being part of a “strategic gentrification plan” to intentionally push black residents out of Chicago.