Designed by renowned architect Jeanne Gang and poised to become Chicago’s third tallest building, Chicago’s Vista Tower could soon have a new co-developer as China’s Dalian Wanda Group looks to sell its sizable, 60 percent ownership stake in the 94-story riverfront skyscraper.
Codeveloped Chicago’s Magellan Development, the under-construction Vista Tower was among five overseas properties that the Beijing-based company was reportedly trying to unload last fall for a combined $5 billion. At the time, Wanda was quick to dismiss the reports as “inaccurate.”
A report by Bloomberg News confirms that the company is indeed seeking takers for the $900 million Vista project along with a West Coast project known as One Beverly Hills. Wanda also sold its ownership position in London’s One Nine Elms project and a pair of Australian developments earlier this month.
The company’s sudden selling spree isn’t a case of cold feet but rather the a result of Chinese government regulators cracking down on what they viewed as excessive (and risky) offshore spending by its largest conglomerates—including Wanda. Beijing had also pressured banks to curb lending for big overseas investments.
With a $700 million construction loan and a healthy number of condo pre-sales already in hand, a change in ownership may have little effect on Vista’s forward momentum.
Less clear is the fate of the 210-room Wanda-branded luxury hotel slated for the building’s lower floors. Dalian Wanda sold off most of its Chinese-based hotels last year.
The frustum-shaped supertall broke ground in late 2016 and is already more than a fourth of the way to its final height of 1,186 feet. Construction is expected to be complete by early 2020.
- Wanda Puts Two U.S. Real Estate Projects Up for Sale [Bloomberg News]
- Vista Tower project for sale [Crain’s Chicago Business]
- Is Vista Tower’s biggest investor looking for a way out? [Curbed Chicago]