Each week, The Elevator Speech summarizes news related to some of the key industry trends, buildings, deals and dealmakers that shaped headlines. Below are articles that caught our attention the week of November 12.
- A group of New York investors purchased the Bank of America Building at 231 S. LaSalle St. for $97 million. The 21-story Bank of America Building is 936,800 square feet and is currently 88.4 percent leased. The venture, led by Michael Silberberg of Berkley Properties, has been aggressively pursuing Chicago office properties in the Loop, and has already struck a tentative agreement for Prudential Plaza in addition to the Bank of America Building.
- Alderman Brendan Reilly blessed the Wolf Point complex plan this week. The decision to approve the plan came after the developers of the River North project agreed to boost the amount of open space in the development and fund traffic improvements in the neighborhood. The Kennedys and Hines are planning to build three towers on the 3.9-acre parcel at the confluence of the north and south branches of the Chicago River, which would include a mixture office and residential space.
- New Jersey biotech firm Durata Therapeutics will move its headquarters to Chicago at 200 S. Wacker Dr. by the end of the year. While the company has only a few dozen employees, it plans to increase its staff to 100 in the next three years as it develops a promising treatment for serious skin infections. The City has been looking to grow its biotech sector for decades, so Durata’s move to Chicago is an important win for the local economy.
- The largest office lease of the year in the O’Hare International Airport area was announced this week: Exercise equipment maker Life Fitness will move its headquarters to Columbia Center after signing a 70,000-square-foot lease in the nine-story office complex at 9525 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. The office complex area surrounding O’Hare is one of the few Chicago suburban submarkets where leasing activity has been strong this year.
- Members of the research team at Jones Lang LaSalle predict the commercial real estate industry will grow in 2013, instead of recessing as in previous years. However, uncertainty in the industry due to national debt, the pending fiscal cliff and euro crisis still exist, and could damper economic growth in the sector.
What CRE or Chicago news headlines from the past week captured your interest? Leave us a comment and let us know.
NOTE: We won’t publish The Elevator Speech next Friday, November 23, due to the Thanksgiving holiday. We wish all our readers and subscribers a safe and happy Thanksgiving.