Scott Goodman stiffs CTA, Cook County on rent, taxes while leasing to DNC

Developer behind Michael Reese hospital site redevelopment is late paying more than $2M in dues for 120 N. Racine while making deals with Chicago transit agency and convention organizers

Scott Goodman Stiffs CTA, Cook County on Rent, Taxes

A photo illustration of Farpoint Development’s Scott Goodman along with 120 North Racine Avenue (Getty, Google Maps, Farpoint Development)

Scott Goodman knows how to play politics in the runup to the Democratic National Convention.

The developer’s Sterling Racine LLC is taking in regular rent from the upcoming confab’s host committee while stiffing the Chicago Transit Authority on master-lease payments and Cook County on property taxes, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The scene of the alleged duplicity is 120 North Racine Avenue, a three-story office building in the Fulton Market District that’s owned by the CTA and fully leased to Farpoint Development, another company headed by Goodman, a co-founder of Sterling Bay who struck out on his own eight years ago.

The Democratic National Committee last August agreed to sublease two of the floors in the building. Representatives of the organization recently said they were unaware of back rent and overdue taxes on the building.

The CTA claims Goodman’s Sterling Racine LLC is ultimately on the hook for nearly $1 million in back rent and $15 million in late fees, according to the newspaper, which reported Goodman paid down about $600,000 on what he owed after the publication inquired about the situation.

There is another $1 million overdue in property taxes on the building.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

Goodman hasn’t been tardy when it comes to other deals around town. Other companies he has formed have recently spent $4.5 million on a warehouse in Pilsen that was later leased to the city as a shelter for migrants, and another $40 million on a vacant commercial building on the Magnificent Mile at 830 North Michigan Avenue.

The CTA doesn’t seem to be holding Goodman’s tardiness against him, either. The agency earlier this year finalized a deal for him to buy the property at 120 North Racine for $35 million — the building where he’s behind on rent — and build the CTA a new $158 million training and control center in Garfield Park. The agency already owns the land in Garfield Park 

The CTA has refused requests from the Sun-Times made under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act for copies of leases and emails related to various deals with Goodman-related entities.

Goodman attributed his failure to pay rent on time to the pandemic and said he will get current on all of the rent, taxes and interest owed to the CTA and the Cook County treasurer.

A representative of the Democratic National Committee said it is current on rent to Goodman, who has collected $677,917 since the start of the lease in September. The non-profit Development Now for Chicago host committee led by local businessman Michael Sacks pays the rent on behalf of the political organization.

Read more

Farpoint Development's Scott Goodman and Lori Lightfoot with a rendering of Bronzeville Lakefront
Goodman sheds tears for Bronzeville Lakefront
Goodman, City Fend Off Sellers After Squashing $30M Deal
Goodman, city fend off lakefront landowners’ suit alleging collusion killed $30M deal
Knighthead Funding Sues Goodman, Hollis Over Migrant Shelter
Knighthead Funding sues Goodman, Hollis over migrant shelter

Goodman and Arthur Hollis, his partner in the ownership of another property at 344 North Ogden Avenue, are also in the midst of fending off a lawsuit brought by a lender accusing them of failing to pay $1.2 million in interest on their $11.5 million mortgage on the property and fraud for allegedly spending the money on converting the building to migrant housing instead of offices. Goodman and Hollis have denied the accusations.

Recommended For You