Shapack cashes in as Trammell Crow drops $100M in Fulton Market

Texas developer moves toward groundbreaking on two-tower project while picking up adjacent site where plans aren’t yet public

Trammell Crow's Mike Lafitte and Shapack Partners’ Jeff Shapack with 315 North May Street and 1150 West Carroll Avenue (Trammell Crow, Shapack Partners, LoopNet, Getty Images)
Trammell Crow's Mike Lafitte and Shapack Partners’ Jeff Shapack with 315 North May Street and 1150 West Carroll Avenue (Trammell Crow, Shapack Partners, LoopNet, Getty Images)

Trammell Crow dropped $100 million on Fulton Market development sites where it’s had two towers in the works for more than a year and to set up its next project, handing a profit to Jeff Shapack, one of the neighborhood’s biggest real estate players.

The Dallas-based firm paid about $77 million for two adjacent parcels separated by Carroll Avenue at 1112 West Carroll and 315 North May Street, public records show. It bought them from the Comforte family, whose late patriarch, Victor Comforte, started Chicago’s Climatemp heating and cooling business in 1950 and ran it for decades from Fulton Market.

Separately, Trammell Crow paid $23.4 million to a venture of Shapack — an early pioneer of Fulton Market — for a property at 1150 West Carroll. Less is known about the buyer’s plans for the site than the former Comforte property next door.

Fulton Market property values have surged since it became a high-end office hub providing tenants an alternative to the Loop and riverfront towers. The development wave was spurred in large part by Google and McDonald’s decisions to put their workplaces in the neighborhood last decade, as the fast-food chain moved its headquarters from the suburbs. Since then, developers such as Shapack — who this spring explored a sale of 167 North Green, which could crush Chicago’s per square foot sales record if it’s bought — have turned the former meatpacking district into a live-work-play destination, adding luxury hotels to the area as well.

Trammell isn’t new to the neighborhood, either. It built the life sciences lab-oriented Fulton Labs project, a pair of buildings at 400 North Aberdeen and 1375 West Fulton streets that, combined, hold more than 700,000 square feet of rentable offices and labs.

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The Texas firm last year gained city approval for a 410-foot, 26-story mixed-use office and commercial building at the May Street parcel, which will contain 180 parking spaces and 650,000 square feet of offices, along with 15,000 square feet of ground-floor retail. To the north at 1112 Carroll, Trammell is moving toward breaking ground on a 370-foot tall, 33-story residential building with 377 units, 90 parking spaces and ground-floor commercial space.

The $550 million project was initially conceived as two office towers. Then Trammell converted the building on 1112 West Carroll to residential use after Chicago’s Plan Commission allowed such developments north of Lake Street last year.

Immediately to the west, at 1150 West Carroll, Shapack is more than doubling an investment he made three years ago with his sale to Trammell, public records show. He bought the property, which includes a 37,000-square-foot industrial building on a 43,000-square-foot lot, for $11.3 million.

How Trammell plans to use the property it bought from Shapack and when it might make a proposal to redevelop it are unclear.

Read more

Two more residential and life sciences buildings greenlighted in Fulton Market
Shapack Partners’ Jeff Shapack and 1152 West Carroll Avenue (Credit: Google Maps)
Shapack continues empire-building in Fulton Market