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 March 4.
- New data from Crain’s Chicago Business found that Chicago is outperforming the suburbs in nearly every measure – jobs, income, retail sales and property values. The growth of Chicago’s “Mega Loop” is self-perpetuating, as more downtown jobs attract more residents to move nearby, which, in turn, becomes a magnet for more employers to join the inward migration. In fact, downtown Chicago is adding residents faster than any other urban core in America. Because of this, commercial real estate developers in Chicago are starting to invest again. However, developers need to present lenders with more detailed plans, stronger investment partners and more cash upfront to secure a mortgage.
- The 22-story downtown Chicago office property at 123 W. Madison St. was sold for $4.85 million or about $61 per square foot. Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce sold the property to Skokie-based Cagan Management Group, which plans to upgrade the lobby and seek out smaller tenants to decrease the property’s vacancy rate.
The 22-story tower at 100 W. Monroe St. will undergo a “major redevelopment” and transform the office space of more than 60 tenants into a Hyatt-brand hotel. Although the office building is almost fully occupied, the property owners are looking to maximize the building’s value with a high-end hotel that includes a restaurant, bar and meeting space. Separately, the chairman of Loews Hotels & Reports plans to open a 400-room hotel in Streeterville in 2015. The new Loews Chicago Hotel is part of a 52-story mixed-use development at Illinois St. and Park Dr. that will also include 398 apartments. The project’s developer, DRW Trading Group, began construction in December but held a ceremonial groundbreaking last week.
- Chicago Public Schools is planning on selling or leasing its headquarters at 125 S. Clark St. and downsizing its office space. Currently, the organization occupies about 450,000 square feet, or 89 percent, of the 125 S. Clark St. building, but is seeking about 200,000 square feet of space by the end of the year. In its request for proposals distributed this week, CPS noted it is looking for one or more firms to provide real estate brokerage, transaction management and strategic planning in regard to both 125 S. Clark and replacement offices.
What CRE or Chicago news headlines from the past week captured your interest? Leave us a comment and let us know.