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What You Must Know About Chicago's Multifamily Pipeline

What You Must Know About Chicago's Multifamily Pipeline

Around 5,000 multifamily units will be delivered in Chicago in the next two years, so we've decided it's a great time for an event on this hot topic. We've worked hard to assemble expert speakers, including Waterton Associatesco-founder David Schwartz. Today he tells us why this is such an important topic.If you're intrigued, then join us on Thursday,March 14.


Waterton Associates is working on 267 luxury units in the former Seneca Hotel.David says most new construction is high-end urban (with River North as the main hotbed), targeting people making more than $100k/year. Developers are hoping for $3/SF, making average apartments (850 SF) around $2,600/month (and explaining the interest in building upscale v. affordable housing). But apartment fundamentals are strong (rent growth, job growth, migration to the city), and for-sales are middling, quelling fears about new product absorption, David says. He's pretty much seen it all, climbing to the tiptop of Grand Teton (above) in August, then exploring the depths of the sea on a scuba trip in Fiji.

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Over at the Seneca (200 E Chesnut), Waterton is half done with work on the apartments. "It has really good bones," David says, referring to the building's nine-foot ceilings and structural upgrades completed before Waterton acquired it. The property's multifamily makeover is mainly cosmetic, returning it to its roots as a '20s brainchild of Daniel Burnham's two sons. David calls the deal very successful, telling us the company will spend well under $200k/unit.