Last year saw downtown Chicago’s office vacancy drop to its lowest level since 2008. Leading the charge was the River North sub-area which topped the list with a vacancy rate of just 10.8%. While typically regarded as a neighborhood of apartments, hotels, and restaurants, River North has become a real commercial alternative to the Loop. The Merchandise Mart continues to land major tenants from near and afar and the area’s many converted warehouses draw small-to-medium tech and media companies. Looking to capitalize on River North’s office boom, Centrum Partners is preparing a new Class A project at 412 N Wells.
Despite its prime location and proximity to transit, the site at the southwest corner of Hubbard and Wells has eluded development and served as a parking lot due to the elevated CTA tracks that snake across the property. Chicago-based architects Hirsch Associates addressed this tricky constraint by designing a curvy glass 9-story office building that neatly hugs the inside of the rail line. The development plan also includes ground level retail and a glassy 22-story apartment tower just west of the commercial building. The project was approved by the City of Chicago last year and basic site preparation is already underway.
Based on a recent video highlighting 412’s transit-rich location and modern office amenities (including a rooftop common area with stunning skyline views), it’s clear that the developers are in the process of courting tenants. With John Buck’s new CNA Center starting construction and joining the pair of 700-foot office towers already rising at the confluence of the Chicago River, the downtown market for new commercial space is starting 2016 in a position of real strength.
·412 N Wells, Chicago, IL [YouTube]
·The hunt for downtown office space keeps getting harder [Crain's]
·Curve-Hugging Office and Apartment Towers Shown to Public [Curbed Chicago]
·Residential & Office Towers Planned For Tricky River North Lot [Curbed Chicago]