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The Inspire West Town apartment building features upscale amenities for people and pets alike. Two entry patios on the ground floor provide a dynamic, eye-catching paver pattern to welcome you to the building. Multiple bike racks around the property provide convenience for commuting residents and guests while a covered dog run just outside the dog wash provides a respite from the weather. Native flowering trees and shade tolerant plantings on the north side of the site soften the building and provide seasonal color. The 2nd level amenity deck is an expansive oasis with continuous raised concrete planters, firepit, grill station, a variety of seating and a sunny lawn area with chaise lounges. The pedestal paver design emphasizes the different gathering spaces with the main field in a lighter, airy color and the lounge area with a darker, more intimate color. The lounge area features a lighted wood plank wall mount bench for extra seating. Freestanding fiberglass planters with a unique, architectural shape hold a sculptural birch tree and playful tree form dwarf spruces. The 8th level sky terrace is an extension of the popular sky lounge with a 180 degree view of the city skyline. The warm tones of the interior pedestal pavers complement the sleek porcelain plank pavers seen through the glass nana wall that can be opened accordion style. A smart, automated louvered pergola creates an outdoor room with a dining table and an outdoor tv. A second seating area around a firepit provides a cozy setting open to the sky.


Photography by Juli Ordower and Brad Swanson



Motif on Belden at 2845 W. Belden in Logan Square is an apartment building with multiple green roofs and a rooftop amenity deck with spectacular views of the city skyline. The ground level entry courtyard features vintage streetscape charm to complement this boutique neighborhood building. The wall of evergreens provides a nice screen for the lobby and the ornamental flowering tree will provide seasonal color. An artificial turf dog run tucked under the el tracks on the ground level provides an easy access space outside the pet spa. To satisfy the green roof sustainability requirements, there are multiple green roofs both on the 2nd level and the rooftop consisting of extensive sedum trays with a 30 genera mix and intensive custom planter boxes with a variety of shrubs, perennials and grasses. A firepit, grilling stations and a variety of seating options round out the rooftop amenities. While some value engineering occurred due to the extended construction schedule, the design intent was maintained.


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Eleven40 is an amenity-driven high-rise apartment building in the south loop featuring ground floor street trees, a full height green wall in the lobby, two amenity roof decks and a green roof on the 26th floor penthouse. Juli Ordower Landscape Architecture collaborated with the developer client and the entire design team on all aspects of the project. The goal was to create a high-end, luxurious building with cohesive, amenity-filled spaces indoor and out that expand the living environment beyond the individual apartments. The amenity decks feature a variety of smaller, intimate spaces for lounging, grilling and conversing. Along with views of the lakefront and the city skyline, a combination of high-end furnishings, specialty paving and lush plantings entice residents outside. An artificial turf dog run area and an outdoor yoga room promote more active spaces for the residents, both human and canine. This project is certified LEED Silver.


Photography by GeoffChen Photography.

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The owners of this single family home in the Bucktown neighborhood were looking for additional outdoor living space and an area for their young son to play.  Above all, the space had to reflect their modern, trend-setting lifestyle. The design includes a flagstone pathway from the back deck of the house to a rectangular concrete paver patio, large enough to fit the desired lounge furniture and firepit. The unique combination of the gray color of the simulated wood plank pavers and the blue tones of the natural flagstone contrast nicely and provide a one of a kind look. Flanking the patio is an L-shaped hedge of tall evergreens to provide privacy from the neighbors. Other landscape includes lawn, symmetrical beds of annuals and a Chanticleer Pear tree for shade. This project received a first place design award from the international design contest sponsored by I-Plants and Urban Horticulture Magazines.




This 600 square foot roofdeck over the garage is quite a luxury in this urban neighborhood. The goal of the design is to enhance the existing brick parapet and fireplace and provide privacy through evergreen treatments. The custom built cedar wood planter boxes provide a long lasting, natural look to highlight the pyramidal arborvitae and rectangular boxwoods. The asymmetrical design of the planters breaks up the rectilinear space and anchors the corners. Daylilies and annuals provide pops of color throughout the season. 



The association board for this north side condominium building was overwhelmed by resident requests for an outside dog run area. In conjunction with On the Ledge Landscaping, Juli Ordower Landscape Architecture provided a design that transforms a previously landscaped space into a dynamic, functional space for dogs and their owners. While initially granting a 12’ wide space in the parkway, the board voted to expand the dog run to a 20’ area after seeing the design based on the existing column spacing of the building. Dog friendly materials such as colored mulch and decorative stone are used. Owner friendly limestone boulders provide multiple seating options.

"I have worked with Juli on numerous projects over the past few years and she is always so creative and finds the perfect solution for every job." 

-Joanne Greene, On The Ledge Landscaping



The garden of this single family home in the Lincoln Park neighborhood was overgrown and not living up to its potential. Keeping a few choice elements such as the boxwood hedge behind the stone bench and the still thriving hydrangeas, the landscape design adds new life to the front garden. A mixture of 3 season flowering perennials and ever blooming rose bushes brighten up the entry to the front door.  In addition, the existing grass parkway is transformed by a serpentine row of low boxwoods with shade loving perennials on either side.

"We are so happy with how the garden turned out. We get frequent accolades from people when out watering the plants. Juli really hit a home run with this one." 

-Client Testimonial 


The small, shade garden in the South Loop is inspired by the charm and warmth of the Southern Colonial style gardens, with their mixes of plants of different colors, sizes, and textures.  This provides a rural sanctuary in the heart of downtown Chicago.

"Our townhouse garden has some challenges – too much shade, poor soil, benign neglect.  It was a joy to work with Juli to create a relaxing, pretty space."

-Client Testimonial 

Photography by Robert R Gigliotti Photography.


The backyard of this residence in Lincoln Park is a small shared space between the main house and the coach house. It consisted of an under-utilized, heavily weeded area with no discernable outdoor living space. The goal of the design is to create a cohesive, usable patio area that enlivens the space despite the heavy tree canopy. A series of charcoal colored rectangular bands separate alternating color tumbled paver fields.

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