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This Week's Chicago Deal Sheet

Private equity firm Origin Investments and developer CEDARst Cos. signed a joint venture agreement to develop Pilsen Gateway, a $64.5M multifamily complex on the edge of the Pilsen neighborhood. The Chicago-based companies have started construction and expect to deliver the first units in spring 2021.

Pilsen Gateway

The project sits within a qualified opportunity zone at 1461 South Blue Island Ave., located less than one-and-a-half miles from downtown, and between Pilsen and the University Village/Little Italy neighborhood just to the north.

CEDARst also renovated a historic building nearby, and company officials said the neighborhood still has a number of such opportunities. 

“For over a decade the land use between Pilsen and Little Italy has been underutilized. That is starting to change,” CEDARst CEO Will Murphy said. “We see 15th Street as an extension of Pilsen, and the new developments underway substantiate this.” 

The 202-unit Pilsen Gateway will include nearly 8K SF of retail, an outdoor amenity deck, a resident lounge, a fully equipped gym and 131 parking spaces.  

The average unit size will be 616 SF, with 75 studios, 42 convertibles, 62 one-bedrooms and 23 two-bedroom units. Seven apartments will qualify as affordable.

Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture designed Pilsen Gateway, and financing was arranged by TCF Bank’s Don Adams and Berkadia’s Michael Slovitt.


Chicago-based CA Ventures promoted four senior executives to help guide its student housing and residential investment strategy. Michael Hales, who previously served as chief financial officer and chief operating officer for CA, became president of the student living division, and Matt Booma was named the global head of residential. JJ Smith took on the newly created role of managing principal of student living, and Bob Flannery is now the firm's chief operating officer. CEO Tom Scott said the company plans to grow its portfolio to $30B in assets by 2024, with the student and residential divisions comprising more than half of that projection.


Melissa Cosentino

Melissa Cosentino joined The Grand at Twin Lakes, an independent living senior community in northwest suburban Palatine, as executive director. Located at 920 East Northwest Highway, the 118-unit development includes 24-hour, on-site healthcare services from Advent Home Health Services. Most recently, Cosentino was director of social services at Central Baptist Village in suburban Norridge.


Zack Zalar joined Chicago-based The Habitat Co. as vice president of acquisition and investment. The 15-year veteran will source, underwrite and close new investment opportunities. He most recently served as a principal of Synergistic Equity in Chicago, where he identified opportunities in the multifamily, hospitality and retail sectors.


Golub & Co. promoted Michael Goldman to executive vice president and Joshua Patinkin to senior vice president, capital markets. Both will also serve on the firm’s investment committee, alongside CEO Michael Newman and Managing Principal Lee Golub. Goldman has been with Golub for 25 years, and Patinkin joined four years ago.


Venture One Real Estate closed the $4.1M off-market acquisition of an 80K SF industrial building at 31 Presidential Drive in northwest suburban Roselle. The 18-foot clear height building, constructed in 1992, was 100% leased to EquipSolutions at acquisition. Lee & Associates’ Jeff Janda and Jeff Galante represented seller Roselle Holdings.


10300-10320 Parkside Ave., Oak Lawn

Essex Realty Group’s Doug Imber, Kate Varde and Brian Kochendorfer brokered the $8M sale of 10409-10435 Menard Ave. and 10300-10320 Parkside Ave., a 108-unit apartment portfolio in southwest suburban Oak Lawn, to a 1031 exchange buyer. This was the second time Essex sold the portfolio. In 2017, it handled the sale to the current seller, a private partnership that deconverted the property from condominiums into rental apartments.


ML Realty Partners acquired 7542 North Natchez Ave., a fully leased industrial building in northwest suburban Niles. Manufacturer Avery Dennison Corp. occupies the 45K SF building.


MB Real Estate officials said tenants throughout 2019 leased more than 200K SF in the East Loop’s Michigan Plaza, a 2M SF office complex at 205 and 225 North Michigan Ave., which the company leases and manages. The new leases, handled by MB’s Mark Buth, Ellen Trager and Ashley Harrison, include Kansas City-based marketing agency Intouch Group, which took 81K SF; the American Library Association, which signed for 54K SF and will move from its present headquarters in 2020; and the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, which expanded into almost 19K SF. Last year’s leasing activity brought Michigan Plaza to 90% leased, according to MB Real Estate.


Cushman & Wakefield’s Jack Keenan represented TrueBlue in an 83K SF lease at Chicago’s Old Post Office, 433 West Van Buren St. TrueBlue, currently located at 860 West Evergreen Ave. near Goose Island, plans to move into its new fourth-floor office by early 2021.


61 Banks St.

Chicago-based @properties completed in seven months the lease-up for 61 Banks St., Draper and Kramer’s new luxury apartment building at the corner of Banks Street and Lake Shore Drive. The eight-story building is the first new construction on Lake Shore Drive in the Gold Coast in 35 years, according to @properties. Designed by Booth Hansen Architects, with interiors by Darcy Bonner and landscaping by Jacobs/Ryan, 61 Banks features two- and three-bedroom apartments, as well as maisonettes.


After looking throughout northern Illinois and southeastern Wisconsin, Trifinity Specialized Distribution signed a long-term, 250K SF lease with Zilber Property Group at its Zilber Industrial Ill, located at 5312 104th Ave., Kenosha, Wisconsin. The manufacturer will occupy the space by mid-January. Thomas Boyle of Lee and Associates of Illinois represented Trifinity, while ZPG’s Michael Kleber and Newmark Knight Frank’s Sergio Chapa and Michael Prost represented the landlord.


The German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, headquartered at 321 North Clark St., signed an 11-year, 17K SF lease with CBRE Global Investors, and will relocate to the entire 35th floor of 150 North Michigan Ave. this August. CBRE Global Investors purchased the tower from John Hancock Real Estate in 2017 for about $132M. CBRE’s Andria Winters and Jon Milonas represented GACC Midwest and CBRE’s Sara Spicklemire, Kelsey Sheive and Seth Tuscher represented the owners.


Developers The Howard Hughes Corp. and Riverside Investment and Development signed a new 17K SF lease with Chef José Andrés' ThinkFoodGroup, which together with Chicago's Gibsons Restaurant Group will occupy 17K SF at 110 North Wacker Drive, the Central Business District’s latest trophy tower. Andrés' group will try out several concepts, including fine dining, an elevated cocktail bar and catering for tenants using the building's event space.


Mark Perkowski and Matthew Wurtzebach, both of Draper and Kramer’s commercial finance group, sourced for Westmont Realty Capital and San Francisco-based Stockbridge Capital Group an acquisition loan used to purchase a 38-building, 1.7M SF industrial portfolio across four sites in the Chicago region. Almost half of the portfolio sits on 47 acres just west of O’Hare International Airport in Elk Grove Village. The remainder is in the suburbs of Buffalo Grove, Elgin and Vernon Hills. The portfolio was 95% leased at the time of closing.


Chicago-based Wolff Landscape Architecture will become the newest office for Confluence, a landscape architecture, urban design and planning firm with a growing number of offices throughout the Midwest. The entire WLA staff will continue with Confluence, while Craig Soncrant and Matt Strange will lead the Confluence Chicago office, and founder Ted Wolff will remain involved in existing and future projects. Confluence, which will work on Trammell Crow’s life sciences hub in Fulton Market, also recently acquired Land Elements, a landscape architecture firm in Fargo, North Dakota.