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Slim Pickings For Grocers To Anchor Wrigley Gum Plant Redevelopment

Chicago Retail

The site of the former Wrigley gum plant has been an eyesore for years but that could change if the developer that owns the site can find an anchor tenant to transform it into one of Chicago's next big retail centers.

Avgeris and Associates purchased the 32-acre site, part of the Stockyards PMD, in 2012 for $5M and razed part of the 175k SF plant in 2013, but it's been fenced in and vacant since while Avgeris seeks a grocer to anchor what could become a stretch of big-box retailers along 35th Street, from Halsted Street to Ashland Avenue.

The problem, according to Ald. Patrick Thompson (11th) is there are few major grocers to choose from. There's already a Mariano's anchoring a shopping center a couple of blocks north, DNAInfo reports. But there's room to call an audible. Avgeris reps told a community meeting last night that there is significant interest in the site and it doesn't have to be anchored by retail. ComEd opened a training center east of the site last year, and Marz Community Brewing is building a 45k SF facility at 3630 South Iron St. Another option would be to seek tech tenants. [DNA]