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This Week's Chicago Deal Sheet

Five years after President Barack Obama proclaimed the historic Pullman Clock Tower Building a national monument, a group of neighborhood stakeholders gathered Wednesday to celebrate that anniversary and what is to come for the Pullman neighborhood.  

Pullman
Pullman National Monument

Former Mayor Rahm Emanuel, 9th Ward Alderman Anthony Beale, Obama senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and others spoke in front of the shuttered Florence Hotel at 11114 South Forrestville Ave.

“Like most of the positive things that have been accomplished in Pullman, the monument is the result of a collaborative partnership — between the Historic Pullman Foundation, President Barack Obama, Valerie Jarrett and Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who never let an opportunity go by without championing it,” Beale said.

“As I see the new Gotham Greens and Whole Foods’ buildings, the Method Home Products plant, the Pullman Community Center and all the new restaurants and stores on 111th Street, I’m thrilled that our support for the monument and for the allocation of [tax increment financing] dollars which lured more than $300M of investment are building a better community and improving people’s lives,” Emanuel said. “But perhaps best of all, I finally have a place to sit down and eat when I come to Pullman.”

Richard Wilson, architect from Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, which leads the site design of the Pullman National Monument, summarized the restoration’s next phase, including the restoration of the clock tower and the creation of a visitors center.

The national monument status helped catalyze development in Pullman, including the new Pullman Artspace Lofts (the neighborhood’s first new residential complex in decades) and the $350M redevelopment of the 180-acre Ryerson Steel site, according to Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives President David Doig.

EXECS

Commercial real estate attorney Jessica Cooper joined Firsel Ross as an associate attorney, working out of its main office in suburban Bannockburn.

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Christopher Sultz joined Westmount Realty Capital’s Chicago office as asset manager. Sultz has more than 20 years of experience managing industrial real estate across Chicagoland and will oversee Westmount assets in four markets. Before joining Westmount, Sultz served as vice president, regional manager of property operations, at CenterPoint Properties Trust in Chicago.

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Northbrook-based Pine Tree added five new staff members to its national shopping center portfolio. Joining the company are John Figueroa, director of human resources; Nicholas Kohlmann, asset manager; Jessie Pomper, graphic design and marketing specialist; Tom Seurynck, enterprise analyst; and Kaylynn Espinoza, associate property manager.

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Diana Bowman joined law firm Perkins Coie’s construction and real estate litigation practices. She comes aboard just after the hiring of construction practice partners Michael Hanahan and Kevin Kolton. To accommodate the firm’s growth, Perkins Coie will move to a larger space at 110 North Wacker Drive.

Aerial for Regency Inn - Naperville
Aerial for Regency Inn - Naperville.

SALES

Marcus & Millichap brokered the sale of the Regency Inn at 1350 East Ogden Ave. in Naperville for $3.35M. The buyer, Northbrook, Illinois-based MZ Capital Partners, plans to create 112 micro-apartments on the site, a proposal that has already won unanimous approval from the Naperville City Council. Marcus & Millichap’s Ebrahim Valliani, Michael Klar, Chris Gomes and Allan Miller represented MZ Capital as well as the seller, Prime Motel Inc.

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Chicago-based ACO Commercial’s George Toscas arranged the sale of a 2.8-acre site in Fulton Market West on behalf of a private investor group. The property, comprising most of the city block bounded by Lake Street, Hoyne Avenue, Damen Avenue and Walnut Street, is fully leased to Standard Equipment Co. and sold to Realterm Logistics for $14.8M in cash. The property is adjacent to the $72.9M CTA Green Line station under construction. Its four brick buildings, which served as Standard Equipment’s headquarters since 1986, total 44K SF. The company will relocate its operations to suburban Elmhurst this quarter. 

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NewLake Capital Partners closed sale-leaseback transactions with affiliates of GR Cos., a cannabis firm, for six of 10 properties within a six-state portfolio, which total about 60K SF of retail space. Company officials say they anticipate closing on the four remaining properties in the next 45 days. The total price for all 10 properties is about $15.5M. NewLake entered into long-term, triple-net lease agreements for each property. GR Cos., also known as Grassroots Cannabis, will operate them all as dispensaries. Grassroots said it will also improve the properties, and NewLake will reimburse the company for these projects up to $4.2M.

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The Colovos | Soupos Group at RE/MAX Destiny represented the owner in the $5.4M sale of a 75K SF industrial building on 3.5 acres at 776 North Oaklawn Ave. in suburban Elmhurst. Vickie Soupos represented the sellers, Fast Heat Inc. The buyer was represented by Joe Bronson of NAI Hiffman.

Innovation park
Innovation Park, Libertyville

LEASES

EVBox signed a 60K SF lease for its first North American headquarters and production facility, at the Innovation Park campus in north suburban Libertyville, around 40 miles north of Chicago. The company said it will use the site to produce hundreds of DC charging units per week, creating between 80 and 120 new jobs.

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NAI Hiffman’s Aubrey Van Reken-Englund and Tabitha Dozier represented Our Children’s Homestead in a 12K SF lease at 280 Shuman Blvd. in Naperville. Formerly located at 387 Shuman Blvd., OCH, a nonprofit that serves youth in the foster care system, sought new customized space that will allow it to expand. Landlord Atrium Acquisition was represented by Bradford Allen’s Ryan Moen.

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Officials from EQ Office, a company wholly owned by Blackstone's real estate funds, said Affirm Inc., a technology company, will open its first Chicago office at 350 North Orleans. Affirm signed a more than 57K SF office lease, spanning two floors, which it plans to move into this spring. Several tech companies, including Nitel, Shoprunner, Gartner, OPEX Analytics and Devbridge Group, have already established a presence at 350 North Orleans. The owners recently spent nearly $20M on the facade, a fitness center, a large tenant lounge and a private roof deck.

This Week's Chicago Deal Sheet
Serendipity Labs, The Mayfair Collection

CONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT

PREMIER Design + Build Group completed a 34K SF shared office and coworking facility at The Mayfair Collection, a mixed-use retail, commercial and residential development in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, developed by HSA Commercial Real Estate. The new Serendipity Labs coworking facility includes 95 shared offices, team rooms, collaborative workspaces, conference rooms, event space, wellness rooms, a Lab café and work lounge areas. Once a collection of underutilized warehouses, the 69-acre adaptive reuse project is anchored by Whole Foods and Nordstrom Rack.

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CA Ventures and Midwest Property Group kicked off construction in River North at 448 North LaSalle St. on a 12-story office building. Broker JLL said 75% of the 172K SF tower is already leased. CA Ventures will occupy the lower five floors and WeWork will lease another four. The developers forecast they will complete the building by Q1 2021, and JLL’s Chris Cassata and Craig Coupe will market the remaining 45K SF of creative office space. Lamar Johnson Collaborative is the project’s architect, and Lendlease served as the general contractor. Indure Build-to-Core Fund LLC was the lender.

THIS AND THAT

Washington, D.C.-based Smart Growth America and LOCUS, its national coalition of real estate developers and investors, launched the National Opportunity Zones Marketplace, an online resource that aims to connect local governments, community leaders and other stakeholders in 13 communities across the country, including Chicago, with project partners to pursue developments in opportunity zones. In addition to Chicago, the other participating communities are Boston; Miami; Norfolk, Virginia; New Orleans; Seattle; Pittsburgh and six Massachusetts communities.