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Crate & Barrel Moving Production Unit From Fulton Market To Logan Square

The Fields, Chicago
Crate & Barrel is moving its photo and video production facilities to The Fields in Logan Square.

Merit Partners spent the past two-plus years redeveloping a 1.2M SF former Marshall Field's warehouse into a mixed-use development, The Fields. Thursday morning, Merit Partners sent shock waves across Chicago real estate, announcing a 117K SF lease with Crate & Barrel Holdings. The Northbrook-based housewares retailer will move its photo and video production operations to The Fields this summer from its offices at 240 North Ashland in Fulton Market.

For Merit Partners partner Paul Fishbein, the Crate & Barrel lease validates Merit's vision for The Fields, and he said he believes it will fuel interest and demand for the remaining 183K SF of The Fields' office footprint.

"Having Crate & Barrel on board gives us some comfort room and momentum," Fishbein said.

Merit Partners Partners Aaron Paris and Paul Fishbein
Merit Partners partners Aaron Paris and Paul Fishbein

Cushman & Wakefield Executive Director Barbara Schenberg, who represented Merit Partners with Leasing Director Teddy Walsh, said Crate & Barrel looked at spaces for a year before finding The Fields. The company wanted a single floor and The Fields' large floor plates could accommodate that. The Fields' 24-7 environment and its proximity to Logan Square's epicenter were also factors.

Merit Partners paid $8M for The Fields in 2014. It has since sold 60K SF to Cermak Fresh Market and 125K SF to self-storage company Cubesmart. The Fields includes 400K SF in warehouse space anchored by Studio 41 and 700 indoor parking spaces.

Merit is developing 123 loft apartments in the building, and the company is also a partner with Clark Street Real Estate on Retail at the Fields, a 50K SF shopping center across the street from The Fields, Fishbein said.

Cushman & Wakefield's Steve Schneider and Andy Heymann represented Crate & Barrel.