Related’s The 78 will include University of Illinois tech-innovation hub

The Discovery Partners Institute will be part of the megaproject’s first phase of work, which will include 2.8M sf of commercial space on the north end of the mixed-use campus

TRD CHICAGO /
Feb.February 12, 2020 03:15 PM
Rendering of The 78 with Related Midwest President Curt Bailey and and University of Illinois Systems President Tim Killeen

Rendering of The 78 with Related Midwest President Curt Bailey and and University of Illinois President Tim Killeen

Related Midwest is adding a technology and innovation hub to its $7 billion megadevelopment project known as The 78 in the South Loop.

The development firm unveiled plans Wednesday for the first phase of its massive project, highlighting what will be the University of Illinois’ Discovery Partners Institute. The university has agreed to build what it calls a state-of-the-art facility with public and private funds — including a portion of a $500 million commitment from Gov. J.B. Pritzker — on land Related donated.

The Discovery Partners Institute will serve as the “centerpiece” of The 78’s nearly 3 million-square-foot first phase, Related President Curt Bailey said in a statement. University of Illinois President Tim Killeen added that locating the institute in The 78 will provide a “magnet for the kind of talent the city and the state need.”

The first phase of the sprawling 62-acre project will include 1.5 million square feet of office space, 700,000 square feet of residential space and 100,000 square feet of retail, hospitality and restaurant space.

Future phases will add another 10 million square feet of commercial and residential space and a new CTA Red Line station.

Infrastructure improvements are already underway, and construction on the Discovery Partners Institute is expected to begin within a year. Initial work will also include 5 acres dedicated to Crescent Park, along with 3 acres of new riverfront.

Related is aiming to wrap up the first phase in 2024.

In December, Mayor Lori Lightfoot, along with other city officials and developers created a pair of advisory councils for The 78 and Sterling Bay’s Lincoln Yards developments. Both panels will make recommendations and meet quarterly for three years.


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