Chicago-area industrial construction starts at highest level in 2 years: report

Amid strong market, increasing number of industrial properties are coming online

An industrial property at 8601 West 47th Street
An industrial property at 8601 West 47th Street

Developers have been rushing to take advantage of the Chicago area’s hot industrial market, and in the third quarter, have launched more projects than at any time in the past two years.

Some 26 developments totaling 7.2 million square feet got underway in the third quarter, the most since the end of 2016, according to a new report from Colliers International. That’s also above the 6.4 million square feet that were expected, the report found.

In all, 50 projects totaling 14.7 million square feet were under construction as the quarter came to an end, a 61 percent increase in the amount of space being built at the start of the second quarter.

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Much of the development was being built on spec: 11.1 million square feet of the space being constructed and 2 million square feet of the space delivered, Colliers said. The largest project launched during the third quarter has been an 880,000-square-foot spec facility in far south suburban Monee.

That facility shows the growing activity in the south and southwest suburbs. Close to 50 million square feet of industrial space is under construction or has been completed in the Interstate 55 and I-80 corridors in the past five years.

The surge along I-55 has spread north into the city, where a number of developments are in the works near where the roadway is better known as the Stevenson Expressway. They include Hilco Redevelopment Partners’ planned $100 million complex, Amigos Foods’ new processing and warehouse facility and Marina Cartage’s 633,000-square-foot spec industrial complex in Back of the Yards.

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