Good news for the suburban office market, officials seek additional oversight on megadevelopments: Daily digest

Most buyers are still spooked by uncertainty around tax reassessment, experts said

TRD CHICAGO /
Oct.October 21, 2019 04:00 PM

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The vacancy rate in the suburban office market is lower than it’s been in more than two years as the demand for space increased for the third consecutive quarter. During Q3, the vacancy rate decreased slightly from 22.8 percent to 22.5 percent, after reaching 23.7 percent last year. [Crain’s]

 

Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development is considering a proposal to increase oversight from city officials and the public on large construction projects known as “megadevelopments.” Any development exceeding 20 acres, 4 million square feet of space or 4,000 residential units would be required to face additional neighborhood meetings, provide more information and make changes based on community feedback. [Curbed]

 

The Illinois Housing Development Authority is getting a new leader. Kristin Faust, president of Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, will replace Audra Hamernik as the authority’s executive director next month. [Crain’s]

 

The overall vacancy rate for Chicago area’s industrial market dropped for the sixth straight quarter. The vacancy rate dropped to 4.9 percent in the third quarter of 2019, beating the 19-year record low of 5 percent recorded last quarter, according to Cushman & Wakefield. [RE Journals]

 

Centrum Realty & Development wants to put up a nine-story office building on the site of a shuttered Wal-Mart Express in River North. The Chicago-based developer and its partner sold another office building in the neighborhood for $31.1 million in January. [Crain’s]

 

City Club of Chicago was served a subpoena and search warrant by a federal grand jury in mid-May as part of an ongoing probe into ComEd’s lobbying practices. The subpoena listed the names of up to 20 people, including Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, and requested the organization’s correspondences with those people. [WBEZ]

 

Homes in Chicago continue to have some of the lowest effective property tax rates in northeast Illinois, according to Civic Federation’s report released Monday. Out of 12 selected Cook County communities, Chicago in 2017 had the lowest average effective tax rate for homes at 1.74 percent, while Harvey had the highest rate at 7.08 percent. [Sun-Times]

 

A social services nonprofit is building 16 new two- to three-flat affordable housing on vacant lots in Englewood. Hope Manor Village is the latest effort by Volunteers of America Illinois to stabilize and rebuild the low-density area in the neighborhood. [Crain’s]

 

Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez is calling for the immediate landmark designation on the historic St. Adalbert Roman Catholic Church and its rectory in Pilsen. Developer City Pads expects to close on a deal this fall to buy the 2.1-acre church property for $4 million. [Block Club]

 

Investors are pouring into EB-5 projects before new rules kick in (Credit: iStock)

EB-5 has seen an investment boost, but that could soon reverse. Federal regulations effective Nov. 21 will double the dollar amount that foreigners need to invest in a project to qualify for EB-5 visas, so many are rushing to get into the program at the existing minimum, according to The Real Deal. In low-employment zones, the amount will rise to $900,000 from $500,000, and in all other areas to $1.8 million from $1 million. [TRD]

 

Compass is appealing a judge’s decision to order a jury trial in the Avi Dorfman case. Dorfman is suing to be recognized as a co-founder of the firm, and a New York Supreme Court judge ruled Oct. 1 that he was entitled to a trial, denying Compass’ motion for a summary judgment, according to TRD. Dorfman sued Compass five years ago for a stake in the company worth more than $200 million, but Compass has called the suit opportunistic and said he turned down multiple offers to work at the brokerage. [TRD]

 

Di-Ann Eisnor has left WeWork as well. The executive held the title “CWeO of Cities” and reported to former CEO Adam Neumann, according to The Information. She had spearheaded WeWork’s “Cities” team and hired designers, engineers and researchers to study urban issues such as affordable housing and sustainable construction. Her team had about 30 people, but they have left or are planning to leave the company. [The Information]


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