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This Week's Chicago Deal Sheet

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It's been dusty around Merchandise Mart in recent months as the building's ownership group was busy implementing a $40M capital improvement program. Now we get to see some of the fruits of those labors.

The Grand Stair at Merchandise Mart is the centerpiece of the building's $40M capital improvement program

The centerpiece of the renovations is the opening of The Grand Stair (shown), a communal space connecting the Mart's first and second floors. The 50-foot-wide staircase serves as a meeting or work place with stadium seating, a projection wall and free WiFi. Other facets of the renovations are a reconfigured food hall with a dramatically designed seating area and more natural light; a 5k SF green space connecting the riverfront to tenants, visitors and pedestrians; a multipurpose lounge with spectacular views of the Chicago River and skyline; and a reception and information desk at the base of the Grand Stair.

SALES

CBRE facilitated a sale-leaseback for Forterra Building Products totaling $217M

CBRE’s Andrew Sandquist, Brian Scott, JC Asensio and Briggs Goldberg repped Forterra Building Products in a $217M sale-leaseback of 49 properties totaling 4M SF in 29 states and two Canadian provinces. Forterra assumed a 20-year lease across the entire portfolio.

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CBRE’s Ryan Bain and Zach Graham repped Frito-Lay in the sale of 13.9 acres at 800 Northgate Pkwy in Wheeling to Hamilton Partners. Hamilton will build a 135k SF spec industrial facility on the site, and retained Ryan and Zach to handle leasing.

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CBRE’s Ryan Bain and Zach Graham repped Christina Properties in the sale of a 40k SF industrial space at 930 Turret Ct in Mundelein, to Larsen Manufacturing. The buyer was repped by NAI Hiffman’s Whit Heitman, Sam Badger and Brad Weiner.

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Transwestern completed the following industrial sales:

  • Michael Marconi and Joe Karmin repped both parties in the sale of a 40k SF property at 1000 Atlantic Dr in West Chicago to Packsmart.
  • Michael Marconi repped a private investor in the acquisition of a 36k SF facility at 707 Kautz Rd in St. Charles.

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Interra Realty sold 6616 N Glenwood for $1.8M

Interra Realty’s Joe Smazal repped the buyers in the following transactions totaling $6M:

  • A 46-unit building at 1331 W Loyola sold for $4.2M. The seller was a venture led by Jack Benjamin, founder of Nadeer Investment Group.
  • A 16-unit building at 6616 N Glenwood (pictured) sold for $1.8M.

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Essex Realty’s Brian Kochendorfer and Brian Karmowski were the sole brokers in the $2.5M sale of 5553 N Clark, a mixed-use building in Andersonville. The building houses one restaurant and four three-bedroom, two-bathroom apartments.

LEASES

Cushman & Wakefield  facilitated 22 leases totaling over 191k SF at Yorkbrook Business Park in Lombard.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Sean Henrick and Joseph Gatto repped Venture One in 22 leases totaling over 191k SF at Yorkbrook Business Park in Lombard (pictured). The completion of the leases brings the 18-building, 736k portfolio to 94% occupancy.

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CBRE’s Ryan Bain and Zach Graham repped Wabtec Corp in the long-term lease renewal of 116k SF of industrial space at 1010 Johnson Dr in Buffalo Grove. Landlord Hamilton Partners was repped in-house by John Baxter.

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Senca Real Estate’s Joe Padorr repped the landlord in a 12-year, 5k SF lease with Union Health Service at 1325 W Howard in Rogers Park.

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NAI Hiffman’s Dan O’Neill repped ownership of Washington Commons in six new transactions representing more than 8k SF of office space at 450-900 E Diehl Rd in Naperville.

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NAI Hiffman’s Dan O’Neill and Jim Adler repped ownership of Westbrook Corporate Center in two recent lease transactions. Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago renewed its 6,988 SF lease in Tower Three. CBRE’s David Mahoney and Meredith Soren Freese repped the tenant. Sirius Computer Solutions renewed its 6,973 SF space on a long-term basis. CBRE’s Tom Peters and Dale Scott repped the tenant.

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Transwestern completed the following industrial leases:

  • Century Tile leased 58k SF at 280 Madsen Dr in Bloomingdale. Justin Lerner and Joe Karmin repped the tenant.
  • Yingliu Casting leased 38k SF at 901 N DuPage Ave in Lombard. Joe Karmin and Justin Lerner repped the owner, Venture One Real Estate.
  • Swanson Flo-Systems leased 28k SF at 775 Belden Ave in Addison. Joe Karmin and Justin Lerner repped the tenant.
  • Leggett & Platt subleased 26k SF at 501 Airport Rd in North Aurora. Michael Marconi, Joe Karmin and Justin Lerner repped the sublessor, GreenSeed Contract Packaging.

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JLL’s Michael Connor repped Chiquita Fresh North America in its 35k SF lease at 14407 S Gougar Rd in Lockport. NAI Hiffman’s Dan Leahy, Mark Moran and John Whitehead repped owner ML Realty Partners.

FINANCING

Renovo Financial closed an incremental $25M commitment from Victory Park Capital, an investment firm focused on private middle-market debt and equity investments. This latest commitment brings VPC’s total investment in Renovo Financial to $75M since 2015.

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Aries Capital’s Rushi Shah and Prabhat Jayara secured a non-recourse CMBS loan totaling $15.5M on behalf of their client for the refinance of two limited-service flagged hotels in Gulf Shores, AL.

HIRES/PROMOTIONS

CBRE promoted Mike Lafitte and Cal Frese to new roles as global group presidents. Mike, previously COO, will focus on the continued development of CBRE’s service lines, including its transactional, property, facilities and project management services. Cal, based in Chicago, previously served as CEO of the Americas and is now Global Group President, Geographies, with direct oversight of the Americas, EMEA and APAC.

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Fifield Realty Corp promoted Randy Fifield to chairwoman and Kevin Farrell to president. As chairwoman, Randy will oversee the design, marketing and execution of Fifield’s apartment projects in Chicago and Austin, TX, along with those in Los Angeles with its sister company, Century West Partners. Kevin will manage Fifield’s national apartment acquisition program as well as its new construction and adaptive reuse projects in Chicago and Los Angeles.

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Fitzgerald Associates Architects brought aboard Michael Breclaw as associate principal. A 25-year industry veteran, Michael led the design of Motorola’s former campuses in Libertyville and Harvard, as well as the Newcity development in Lincoln Park.

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James Pietrarosso joined Brown Commercial Group. James previously was an industrial broker with Coldwell Banker Commercial NRT. During the past five years, he completed more than 100 transactions and earned awards for his transaction volume.

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Seneca Real Estate hired Miranda Vula, who brings over 14 years of Chicago-area real estate knowledge and experience to the Chicago-based firm, having transacted over 600 commercial and residential real estate transactions to date. Her experience has ranged from selling vacant parcels to negotiating new construction high-rise developments.

KUDOS

Inland Real Estate Group CEO Daniel Goodwin was one of two recipients of the 2016 Robert Christ Affordable Housing Award, presented by the DuPage Homeownership Center. Daniel was recognized for his extraordinary commitment and contributions to affordable housing initiatives in DuPage County.

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Interra Realty was chosen by Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago to broker a 14-building portfolio with a total of 289 units in Austin, East Garfield Park, North Lawndale, Roseland and West Humboldt Park. Co-founders David Goss and Jon Morgan, along with Lucas Fryman, are the brokers for the project. The portfolio is over 80% occupied.

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Bradford Allen was awarded the following lease assignments:

  • Andrew DeMoss and Thomas Hanrahan are the brokers for a combined 856k SF at 122 and 332 S Michigan Ave on behalf of Aetna Realty. The buildings are historical properties with park front access, views of Lake Michigan, and proximity to commuter rail and bus lines.
  • Ryan Moen and John Millner are the leasing agents for 25 Northwest Point, a 207k SF Class-A office building in Elk Grove Village owned by the Farbman Group.
  • Bradford Allen is the exclusive leasing agent for the East West Corporate Center in Naperville. The Class-A buildings, 1751 and 1771 W Diehl Rd, are a combined 226k SF.

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NGKF’s Elise Couston, Adam Marshall and Mark Deady were named the leasing agents for Bloomingdale Corporate Center, a 276k SF, 20-acre, three-building, industrial business park being developed by IDI Gazeley in Bloomingdale. NGKF reps the contract purchaser, Cornerstone Real Estate Advisers, acting on behalf of an institutional client.