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Monthly Archives: August 2014

Chicago Commercial Real Estate – In the News

Tom’s Recommended Reading for the Week

Check out the top news in Chicago commercial real estate before heading into the weekend!

  1. Can a new broker fill Trump’s long-vacant retail space – Donald Trump’s controversial decision to splash his name on his River North skyscraper drew lots of national media attention over the summer. Now the outspoken developer will test whether tenants took notice. New York-based Trump Organization hired retail brokerage RKF to find office tenants to fill the lower two levels of the long-vacant four-level shopping area at the base of the Trump International Hotel & Tower at 401 N. Wabash Ave… Crain’s Chicago
  2. Dom & Tom Expands in Chicago with Plans to Increase Presence in the City – In an ongoing effort to increase its presence in Chicago, digital development agency, Dom & Tom Inc. announced today that the company is doubling its office space in the Tribune Tower and adding several new web & mobile developers, UX/UI specialists, visual designers, and digital strategists to their staff. Cofounder and CEO, Tom Tancredi, has relocated to the Chicago office from New York City, where the company was founded five years ago, to focus on the company’s continued expansion… World Business Chicago 
  3. Healthcare No Longer a Niche Market – Harrison Street Real Estate Capital just pulled off the biggest healthcare deal of the year, and Mindy Berman, the managing director of JLL, which brokered the 12-asset, $283 million sale, tells GlobeSt.com that the offering generated greater interest from investors than normally seen, partly due to the growing importance of medical office in general, and partly due to the way the Chicago-based Harrison carefully constructed this specific portfolio. The investors who bought the properties were not disclosed… Globe St.
  4. Innovation-focused Morgan Manufacturing to open in Fulton Market – A revamped industrial complex in the Fulton Market district will give large corporations another urban space to connect with up-and-coming Chicago companies. Morgan Manufacturing, an 88,000-square-foot event, meeting and work facility slated to open by late September, will provide space for organizations such as the Chicago Innovation Awards to bring potential partners together, the company announced Monday… Chicago Tribune
  5. What Your Workplace Says About Your Company Culture – The world’s highest-performing and most innovative companies create physical workspaces that support business goals and culture, foster innovation and collaboration and promote employee retention. The saying that “every picture tells a story” is supported by the fact that office spaces of today often reveal more about companies’ cultures than the “About Us” sections of their websites… NREI
 

Chicago Commercial Real Estate – In the News

Tom’s Recommended Reading for the Week

Check out the top news in Chicago commercial real estate before heading into the weekend!

  1. Chicago a top city for fastest-growing companies, Inc ranking says – Chicago is a top city on Inc.’s annual ranking of America’s fastest-growing private companies, the magazine said today. The Inc. 5000 ranking for 2014 analyzes companies’ three-year revenue growth and lists the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies and small businesses in the U.S. Chicago has 95 companies on the list — the most of any city except New York. San Francisco came in at No. 7, with 63 companies… Crain’s Chicago
  2. Global Investors Target Secondary Markets – Foreign investors have long flocked to the top gateway markets like New York, San Francisco, and Washington, DC, but increasingly these individuals and institutions are poking around secondary markets throughout the US, a reflection both of the American economy’s strength and the transparency provided by the country’s real estate laws… Globe St. 
  3. Why real estate investors just can’t quit Chicago – The possibility of substantial tax increases to pay for the city’s and state’s unfunded pension obligations hasn’t prevented real estate investors from plunking down big sums—even record-breaking ones—to snap up property in the area.“I think it’s an issue, but I don’t think it’s stopping anyone from investing in Chicago… Crain’s Chicago
  4. Selling points: Why now is a good time to sell – The recent sale of 200 W. Monroe, a 23-story office tower located in The Loop in downtown Chicago, drives home a point that has become increasingly evident in recent months: Today’s real estate market is a great one for sellers. And, like any good sellers’ market, it is not a bad market for buyers, either… RE Journals 
  5. U.S. Construction Shifts Into Second Tier – Construction projects in cities across the country that stalled during the economic downturn now are getting the green light, an indication that the real-estate recovery is spreading beyond a handful of urban areas. The construction of office buildings, hotels and apartment buildings picked up in New York, San Francisco and Boston several years ago. Now activity is spreading to Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas and a number of other cities that are finally seeing a pickup in employment, economists say… Wall Street Journal 
 

Chicago Commercial Real Estate – In the News

Tom’s Recommended Reading for the Week

Check out the top news in Chicago commercial real estate before heading into the weekend!

  1. Amid rising market, pile of bad real estate debt shrinks further – Special servicers — firms that get paid to work out bad real estate debt — have a lot more free time these days. The delinquency rate on Chicago-area commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) loans dipped below 5 percent in May and has stayed there, its lowest point since January 2010, according to Trepp LLC, a New York-based research firm. The rate was 4.9 percent in July, down from 7 percent a year earlier and a peak of 10.6 percent in January 2013… Crain’s Chicago
  2. After legal fight, Des Plaines office building sells for huge discount – A Chicago investor bought a nearly half-empty foreclosed office building near O’Hare International Airport for $6.2 million, less than a third of what the lender was owed on it. The sale of the 244,049-square-foot building at 1350 E. Touhy Ave. ends a troubled chapter that began in December 2009, when the property’s developer, Des Plaines-based MR Properties LLC, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection... Crain’s Chicago
  3. Serial converter has no such plans for latest Loop office tower buy – Prices of the area’s biggest commercial properties keep rising, and so do their taxes. Property taxes rose at nine out of the 10 commercial properties in Cook County with the highest bills in 2013, according to the Cook County Treasurer’s Office. That’s similar to the 2012 tax year, when tax bills also mostly rose for the area’s biggest landlords. Yet unlike 2012, when five of the most valuable commercial properties here were hit with double-digit tax increases, increases in the past year were more modest, perhaps reflecting a cooling real estate market that was red-hot throughout 2012 and into 2013… Crain’s Chicago
  4. Office space, the final frontier – When Montgomery Ward & Co. opened its massive Catalog House along the Chicago River in 1908, it was at the cutting edge of commerce, with “pickers” on roller skates zipping through the halls to gather merchandise ordered from the retailer’s catalogs.
    More than a century later, the behemoth at 600 W. Chicago Ave. is once again a pathbreaking address in Chicago commerce. Every day, hundreds of employees bicycle to work at Groupon Inc., where they sell all manner of products and services via the Internet. It’s just one sign of how the city’s burgeoning tech sector is radically transforming the largest downtown office market west of Manhattan… Crain’s Chicago
  5. Zell Tackles Overhaul at Equity Commonwealth: Real Estate – Since taking over Equity Commonwealth in an investor-led revolt almost three months ago, Sam Zell and his team have found buyers for more than $200 million of properties, sold shares in a former unit and moved the company’s headquarters. Now they face a bigger challenge. Zell and one of his longtime deputies, David Helfand, must remake the Chicago-based office landlord after an ouster of top executives based on claims of mismanagement and a misdirected strategy. They’re in charge of a disparate group of more than 100 properties in U.S. suburbs and markets where rent growth is slower than in big cities such as… Bloomberg 
 

Chicago Commercial Real Estate – In the News

Tom’s Recommended Reading for the Week

Check out the top news in Chicago commercial real estate before heading into the weekend!

  1. Adventus buys Chicago-area office property near O’Hare – A Canadian real estate investment trust with a voracious appetite for office properties in the Chicago suburbs has zeroed in its largest deal yet, agreeing to pay just over $95 million for a complex near O’Hare International Airport. Vancouver, British Columbia-based Adventus Realty Trust has a preliminary deal to buy the three-building Columbia Centre complex in Rosemont for a little more than $95 million, or $154 per square foot, according to people familiar with the deal… Crain’s Chicago
  2. Morgan/Harbour Construction completes HQ’s for Hub Group – Morgan / Harbour Construction has completed the new ground-up 130,000 square foot, four-story office build-to-suit for the Hub Group (NASDAQ: HUBG) at 2000 Clearwater Drive in Oak Brook, Illinois. The build-to-suit office project represents the first new office building in Oak Brook since 2000. A leading asset-light freight transportation management company providing comprehensive intermodal, truck brokerage and logistics services, Hub Group relocated its headquarters and nearly 500 employees from its previous locations in Illinois... RE Journals 
  3. Property taxes up at biggest buildings in Cook County – Prices of the area’s biggest commercial properties keep rising, and so do their taxes. Property taxes rose at nine out of the 10 commercial properties in Cook County with the highest bills in 2013, according to the Cook County Treasurer’s Office. That’s similar to the 2012 tax year, when tax bills also mostly rose for the area’s biggest landlords. Yet unlike 2012, when five of the most valuable commercial properties here were hit with double-digit tax increases, increases in the past year were more modest, perhaps reflecting a cooling real estate market that was red-hot throughout 2012 and into 2013… Crain’s Chicago
  4. Virtual Marketing Helps Brokers Showcase Properties – There has been a lot of buzz about the use of drones to capture aerial photos and a bird’s eye view of properties. Yet drones are just one of the high-tech tools that brokers use these days to market real estate assets for sale or lease. Although the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has taken steps to crack down on drones, the use of such unmanned aerial vehicles to shoot photos has become increasingly popular among both commercial brokers and residential realtors… NREI 
  5. Before IPO, Enova picks future Chicago HQ – As it gets ready to be spun off into its own publicly traded company, online payday lender Enova International Inc. found a new Chicago headquarters. Enova signed a 12-year lease for 160,240 square feet in the 23-story office tower at 175 W. Jackson Blvd., where it will move early next year, the company confirmed… Crain’s Chicago
 

Chicago Commercial Real Estate – In the News

Tom’s Recommended Reading for the Week

Check out the top news in Chicago commercial real estate before heading into the weekend!

  1. Construction deals rise in first half – The local construction industry got off to a strong start during the first half of the year but will likely be challenged to continue such a pace as 2014 wears on. Signed contracts for commercial and residential construction projects in the Chicago area hit nearly $4.3 billion during the first six months of the year, up 16 percent versus $3.7 billion in deals during the same period a year ago, according to data from New York-based McGraw-Hill Construction… Crain’s Chicago
  2. BECO buys Motorola Mobility’s Libertyville campus – The vacant former Motorola Mobility campus headquarters in Libertyville has been acquired by a Washington, D.C.-based commercial real estate company that plans to remake the space into an “innovation campus.” BECO Management Inc. said Monday it purchased the five-building, 1.2-million-square-foot complex on 84 acres of land for $9.5 million… Chicago Tribune
  3. Is something wrong with Chicago’s suburbs? – In the past, I’ve written about Connecticut becoming a suburban corporate wasteland as well as the rise of the executive headquarters in major global city downtowns. What we see is anecdotal signs of re-centralizing, while the more bread-and-butter — though still often well-paying — jobs are heading to less-expensive suburban locales in places like Austin, Texas; Charlotte, North Carolina; and Salt Lake City. This leaves expensive and business-hostile suburbs around global cities, like most of those in Connecticut, in a tough spot… Crain’s Chicago
  4. Wintrust sings lease for 231 S. LaSalle – Wintrust Financial Corporation has entered into a long term lease for the main banking hall, multiple floors, retail space and primary signage to the iconic 231 South LaSalle building. Built in 1924, the building is located at the base of “the canyon” on the corner of LaSalle and Jackson, across from the Federal Reserve Bank and the Chicago Board of Trade. Once the home of Continental Illinois Bank, the building is considered one of the most recognizable buildings in the Loop and features a banking hall believed to be one of the largest of its kind in the world… RE Journals
  5. Sterling Bay to buy LaSalle-Wacker Building – Sterling Bay Cos. has found its next target: an 85-year-old riverfront office tower on Wacker Drive. A venture of the Chicago-based developer agreed to pay $53 million for most of the 41-story art deco tower at 221 N. LaSalle St., known as the LaSalle-Wacker Building, according to a person familiar with the deal. The acquisition marks another turnaround opportunity for Sterling Bay, which is converting the former Fulton Market Cold Storage building into Google Inc.’s future Chicago office and is trying its hand at the long-vacant, 2.7 million-square-foot Old Main Post Office straddling the Congress Parkway… Crain’s Chicago