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This Week's Chicago Deal Sheet

The office sublease market may finally be cooling off. The amount of sublease space in Chicago's Central Business District increased by 75% between Q1 2020 and Q1 2021, hitting a historic high of 5.7M SF, but the market has begun to contract, according to MBRE.

There is now 5.4M SF of available sublease space, which is 287K SF less than there was at the end of Q1 2021, the firm reports.

Merchandise Mart

A few new blocks of sublease space were added to the market. At the Merchandise Mart in River North, 89K SF of Velocity EHS’ space became available, according to MBRE. But other large blocks, such as Groupon’s 293K SF at 600 West Chicago Ave., also in River North, have been removed.

The West Loop remains king of the sublease market. There are 124 spaces available for sublease, totaling more than 2.3M SF, roughly 44% of the downtown's available space. The Central Loop comes in second, with 75 spaces available totaling about 1M SF.


Chicago real estate executive Jim McGill launched Stotan Industrial, a private investment firm specializing in the acquisition and development of industrial properties critical to the U.S. supply chain and e-commerce distribution. McGill will initially focus on markets such as Chicago, Columbus, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Louisville and Charlotte, and plans to deploy between $250M and $300M of capital in the next 18 months. He was previously an executive vice president with CA Industrial, a subsidiary of Chicago-based CA Ventures. Prior to joining CA Ventures, McGill was the managing director of capital deployment for Prologis’ central region.


Stage Equity Partners, a Chicago-based healthcare real estate investment firm, hired Alex Katz as managing director of development and Justin Kleifield as senior associate - acquisitions and asset management. Before joining Stage Equity, Katz served as a partner with a privately held real estate company that developed retail and medical properties in the Chicago area. He also previously served as director of acquisitions for Skokie, Illinois-based Next Realty. Kleifield previously worked as an asset manager at Chicago-based Dayton Street Partners.


Jesse Van Dyke

Sterling Bay hired Jesse Van Dyke as its first director of national leasing. Van Dyke will supervise the firm’s leasing efforts across all outside markets, including Miami, Dallas, Portland and Washington, D.C., and supplement its efforts in Chicago. Sterling Bay intends to have expanded to another three U.S. markets by the end of 2021. Van Dyke began his career at CBRE in 2000, specializing in tenant representation, and in 2008, Van Dyke joined JLL, where he worked with tenants in the tech and finance sectors.  


Kiser Group promoted Austin Parker from associate to adviser after nearly two years with the company. He will focus on helping investors buy and sell multifamily properties between two and four units throughout Chicago. As an associate, Parker focused on the South Side market. In addition to Parker’s promotion, Kiser Group hired Ben Goldman as a new associate.


Chicago-based Waterton hired Aaron Sheppard as vice president of capital programs. He will oversee construction and development for Pathway to Living, Waterton’s senior housing arm. He was previously an account director at Cushman & Wakefield as well as director of operations at Ascension Senior Living.


Michael Tenuta founded Naperville, Illinois-based Strategic Project Advisors. The firm will represent owner interests in all aspects of project planning and construction management in Chicagoland and across the U.S. Most recently, Tenuta headed up project management at Avison Young’s Chicago office.

101 West


Monroe Residential Partners sold 101 West, an apartment community at 101 West Liberty St. in northwest suburban Barrington, to HP Ventures Group for $20.7M. 101 West totals 63K SF of rentable space, consisting of 64 one- and two-bedroom units. Marty O’Connell, David Gaines and Kyle Butler of JLL Capital Markets represented the seller.


Woodland Hills, California-based NewMark Merrill Cos. purchased Bricktown Square, a 292K SF retail center at 6420 West Fullerton Ave. on Chicago’s Northwest Side, from Bonnie Investment Group. NewMark Merrill owns and operates three other retail properties in the Chicagoland area, including Stony Island Plaza in Chicago and Stratford Crossing in northwest suburban Bloomingdale. NewMark Merrill was represented in-house by Sandy Sigal, Jim Patton, Brad Pearl, Sandra Kist and Susan Rorison. The sellers represented themselves. The center was financed by ReCap, a subsidiary of RGA Real Insurance Group of America. 


WFLD, the local Fox-owned and -operated television station, signed a multiyear lease restructure and extension for 64K SF in Michigan Plaza at 205 North Michigan Ave., where it has been since 1985. Savills’ Robert Sevim and Kelly Givens negotiated the deal for WFLD, while MB Real Estate’s Mark Buth, Steve Hennessy, Ellen Trager and Ashley Harrison represented the owners of Michigan Plaza.


Wolf Point East, a new 698-unit luxury apartment building in River North, hit the 95%-leased milestone and has exceeded pro forma rents, according to Luxury Living Chicago Realty, which leases the tower. Wolf Point East was designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects in partnership with Pappageorge Haymes Partners. 


American Bear Logistics, an ocean freight transportation company, signed a lease for 57K SF at 1475 Thorndale Ave. in northwest suburban Itasca. Nick Krejci of Darwin Realty/CORFAC International represented the tenant.


Associated Bank completed a $26.7M loan to Shorewood Development Group for the acquisition and revitalization of the Market Meadows Shopping Center, a 148K SF Jewel-anchored shopping center at 1201 South Naper Blvd. in west suburban Naperville. The developer will also construct a new three-tenant building of nearly 7K SF at the northwest corner of 75th Street and Naper Boulevard as well as a Lock-Up self-storage facility on the property. Daniel Barrins of Associated Bank’s Commercial Real Estate group handled the loan arrangements and closing.

Premier's new Buffalo Grove headquarters


Premier Design + Build Group began designing a 52K SF facility in Buffalo Grove that will serve as its new corporate headquarters. The firm outgrew its previous headquarters and temporarily relocated to a Schaumburg building. In addition, the company will open a downtown Chicago office this summer to serve clients in the central business district.