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Redevelopment plan for River North’s vacant Sports Authority revealed

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The 80,000-square-foot building could be reused or could give way to a new commercial high-rise

Image courtesy of Next Realty

Empty since Sports Authority made the decision to close and liquidate all of its nationwide retail locations early last summer, the old eight-story building at 620 N. LaSalle may potentially see new life as an adaptive reuse or build-to-suit office development. Skokie-based developer Next Realty has announced two scenarios for the prominent River North structure that the firm has owned since 2002.

For a tenant or tenants with more immediate occupancy requirements, Next Realty is prepared to gut and redevelop the existing loft-style building and its roughly 10,000-square-foot floor plates. A second, more ambitious, option would involve the construction of an all new build-to-suit office tower that could rise as high as 17 stories, based on a release from the property owner.

CBRE has been selected to market the property on behalf of Next Realty. According to the brokerage giant, the River North real estate market is nothing short of ripe for this type of office project. With 7.7 percent vacancy reported in the fourth quarter of 2016, the neighborhood continues to maintain the lowest vacancy rate among all downtown Chicago submarkets.

According to Next Realty, the old Sports Authority site is especially well-positioned for the future given an estimated 2,300 new residential units within a half-mile radius of the property that are expected to come online in the next 12 to 18 months. As for 620 N. LaSalle, the developer is targeting mid 2018 delivery for the adaptive reuse option or spring 2019 for the corporate high-rise route.

River North’s Sports Authority building circa 2011
Flickr Creative Commons/Zol87