Grainger inks deal for 100K sf at the Merchandise Mart

The maintenance-supply firm is subleasing space from Motorola Mobility in the Vornado-owned office building

Chicago /
Aug.August 13, 2018 05:00 PM

Merchandise Mart and Grainger CEO D.G. Macpherson (Credit: iStock)

W.W. Grainger is taking over 100,000 square feet in Vornado Realty Trust’s Merchandise Mart, consolidating other Downtown offices into space it will sublease from Motorola Mobility.

The maintenance-supply company has an option to expand up to 150,000 square feet in the building that Vornado is now branding “theMART,” sources told Crain’s.

The Lake Forest-based company now will look to sublease its nearly 60,000-square-foot office at 500 West Madison Street and roughly 30,000 square feet it leases at 125 South Clark Street.

Motorola signed a 15-year lease for 609,000 square feet in the Merchandise Mart four years ago. But a wave of job cuts put the phone maker on a space-shedding spree.

Among the companies to sublease large portions of Motorola’s space were software provider VelocityEHS at 91,000 square feet, spirits maker Beam Suntory at 110,000 square feet and logistics tech firm Project44 at 42,000 square feet.

Motorola Mobility still occupies 144,000 square feet on the 19th floor and about 64,000 square feet on the 17th floor. Grainger’s deal will give it most of the 18th floor.

Vornado said the 3.7 million-square-foot Mart was 99.5 percent leased at the end of the second quarter, much better than the overall Downtown occupancy rate of 87 percent, according to CBRE.

[Crain’s] — John O’Brien


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