By Richard Mayer
The developer of the proposed Maple Street Lofts project in downtown Mount Prospect feels concerns shared by a newly formed group of citizens will be helpful moving forward.
Plans call for two apartment buildings, seven and eight-stories high respectively, 66 single-family rowhomes, a parking garage, retail and commercial space. The project site is located on the former Parenti and Raffaelli property, 215-225 E. Prospect Ave., at Maple Street.
Formal plans have yet to be presented to the village board for approval.
According to Chris Coleman from Wingspan Development, which is part of the development team with developer Nicholas & Associates, recent discussions on the project are helpful.
“We appreciate and actively solicit input from the community and stakeholders,” Coleman said. “That’s always important. For this particular development, it’s even more important. As we have been listening to residents’ comments, questions and concerns, most of what we’re hearing is positive. When you give people a forum to ask questions and they get the answers, most are satisfied.”
Two groups that have been consistent supporters of the development, he said, are the Mount Prospect Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Merchants Association. He said both groups are excited about the possibility of more residents moving to downtown — residents that would likely patronize local businesses.
Chris Bozonelos of Mrs. P & Me restaurant, and head of the Downtown Merchants Association, is one of those supporters. Mrs. P & Me is located one block west of the Maple Street Lofts site.
“They hosted one of the information sessions here at Mrs. P & Me, and over 100 people attended,” Bozonelos said. “The downtown merchants support the development and I personally support it. I work and live right here in the neighborhood, and I’ve been here for years, so I have a unique perspective. I’m excited to see something happen with the property after all this time. I think the plan is great.”
Both the chamber and Downtown Merchants Association on Feb. 4 submitted a letter to the village in support of the project.
According to Bozonelos and chamber Director Dawn Fletcher Collins, traffic concerns expressed by opponents of the project are “exaggerated.”
“The population of Mount Prospect has tripled since 1960,” the letter says. “Traffic in the city of Chicago at rush hour is traffic; what we have in our village are minutes of delay when hundreds of commuters are traveling to and from work during very specific times of day. This is anticipated and expected in every community.”
Both stated in the letter they are not sure what people mean when they say the proposed project is “out of character.”
“The current character or ‘feel and appearance’ of that block of the neighborhood is that of a factory,” they said. “Density and residents are necessary to support existing businesses and the kind of businesses younger residents expect in their downtown. Mount Prospect needs to meet the needs of its residents and that includes the younger demographic.”
According to Bozonelos and Collins, the younger population that will likely occupy the majority of Maple Street Lofts will utilize the train and frequent local businesses.
“This is part of long-term goal planning and something which has been discussed at length for over a decade with many residents and business owners during that time period,” they said in the letter.
They added the downtown business community can only be as robust as the number of residents who live in the downtown area, and critical mass is vital to business survival.
“We are excited and proud of this and all proposed residential development projects and strongly encourage the board to move forward with Maple Street Lofts project,” they concluded.
According to Coleman, a formal submittal will be presented soon. “We’ve been listening to comments for months and modifying our plans to address their concerns,” he said. “I think when the public hearings actually happen, people will see that we took their concerns to heart.”
Asked about the group Citizens for Responsible Growth in Mount Prospect, that’s concerned about the size of the proposed development, Coleman said, “There will always be some people you can never please, that’s to be expected. Often, that minority is very vocal so they get a lot of attention. We try to focus on the concerns of the majority of residents and work with them to deliver the best possible development.”
Based on recent deals, the two properties could fetch more than $100 million combined.
The developer of two shopping centers in northwest suburban Kildeer has put them up for sale, testing investors’ enthusiasm for retail buildings in a shaky market.
Bond hired CBRE to sell Kildeer Marketplace and Kildeer Village Square, fully leased properties totaling about 265,000 square feet at Rand and Plum Grove roads. Bond built Kildeer Marketplace, a 65,500-square-foot shopping center anchored by a Whole Foods Market, in 2012, and in 2017 completed Kildeer Village Square, a 198,900-square-foot property with tenants including Nordstrom Rack, Art Van Furniture and Sierra Trading Post.
Though the real estate investment market overall is strong, investors are having a harder time figuring out what a shopping center is worth these days. Retail vacancies in the Chicago area are elevated after a wave of store closings, and healthy retailers aren’t expanding the way they used to.
After the demise of the Carson’s department chain, many investors are waiting for other shoes to drop—the fate of Sears Holdings will be decided soon by a bankruptcy judge—and the outlook for the market is unclear as online shopping continues to grow. Strip center values nationally have started to fall: An index of U.S. strip center values calculated by research firm Green Street Advisors declined 2 percent last year.
Yet the Kildeer properties are full of strong tenants in a healthy trade area, and investors are still willing to pay up for quality.
“The sky isn’t falling and our retailers are doing well,” said Robert Bond, co-founder and president of the Chicago-based developer.
ADVERTISINGHe’s said he’s willing to sell the shopping centers together or apart—or not at all.
“We’re evaluating market value, just like we would with any asset,” Bond said. “If the market agrees with my perception (of value), we’re sellers. If the market doesn’t agree with my perception, we’re not.”
He declined to say what he thinks the properties are worth, as did George Good, executive vice president at CBRE. But a back-of-the-envelope calculation suggests the shopping centers could fetch more than $100 million combined.
The properties generate annual net operating income of $6.3 million, according to a CBRE website marketing them. Similar shopping centers have sold the past couple of years at capitalization rates—first-year returns—of roughly 5.5 to 6 percent. In that range, the properties could fetch $104 million to $114 million.
While 2018 sales hit record volume, things did slow in Q4. Find out what buyers expect from the year ahead. Even as the cycle matured, and interest rates rose in the fall, investors kept buying apartments in 2018.
More than $172.6 billion of apartments changed hands last year, which was a record level of deal activity and a 12 percent increase compared to 2017, according to New York-based Real Capital Analytics (RCA).
Sales of single apartment buildings drove the sales flurry in 2018. Single-asset sales rose $12.6 billion from 2017 to reach $130.1 billion in 2018, according to RCA. Additionally, portfolio sales rose 15 percent and entity-level sales climbed 23 percent, driven by Brookfield’s acquisition of Forest City for $4.6 billion.
Volume for mid- and high-rise apartments rose 34 percent in 2018, while garden apartment sales only rose 2 percent, according to RCA. Cap rates for garden apartments averaged 5.5 percent, while mid- and high-rose cap rates were at 4.9 percent.
“This growth in volume is occurring in the face of record high prices,” RCA wrote in its US Capital Trends report for Apartments, which was released on Jan. 23. “The RCA CPPI for the apartment sector climbed 8.9 percent in 2018 from 2017. This growth late in the cycle is impressive, but it is a slower pace of growth than recent trends. Prices grew at double digit rates from 2014 to 2017.”
While sales increased in 2018, many buyers endured a problem similar to what they encountered in previous years—a paucity of good apartments to buy. “We like to say there will be plenty of buying opportunities in our markets, but last year was pretty tough,” says Doug Root, Co-Founder & Managing Partner of Blackfin Real Estate Investors.
When the 10-year Treasury rose above 3 percent in September and October, it did create a pause in the market, which provided an opportunity for buyers. When rates rose, Root thinks the buyers’ side of the market absorbed roughly the first 50 basis points.
“Then there was another tick up that I think caused buyers to pause a little bit,” Root says. “I think sellers were scratching their heads because they were able to name their price for a long time now. Now they were getting pushback from buyers. We saw that a lot at the end of the year.”
Deal volume did slow as the year wore on. It was only up 9 percent year-over-year in Q4 after growing at 14 percent earlier in the year, according to RCA.
As of late November, brokers were calling Matt Ferrari, Senior Managing Director of TruAmerica Multifamily, and encouraging him to pursue their listings because there was less traction or bids from potential buyers.
“I don’t know if that [trend] was because of volatility in the markets or buyers had hit their allocations for the year and were waiting until next year to pursue deals,” Ferrari said at the Bisnow Multifamily Annual Conference East conference in Tysons Corner, Va., in November. Root was hearing similar things from brokerage firms, but by January he says those firms cleared out their backlog.
“I just made four or five phone calls today to different brokerage shops that cover huge volumes of deals,” he said in early January. “They cover a lot of volume and they said they cleared all of their deals by the end of the year.”
Despite that, Bobby Lee, President and COO of JRK Property Holdings, thinks 2019 will bring more buying opportunities than 2018.
“The recent dislocation in the equity markets and corresponding view of the economic health and chance of recession seems to be trickling into the multifamily sector,” Lee says. “There seemed to be slightly less competition for assets in Q4 versus earlier in the year.”
TruAmerica Multifamily purchased $1 billion of apartment properties in 2018 and plans to acquire roughly the same amount in 2019.
“We will continue to look for under-managed assets or assets with renovation upside in first- and second-ring suburbs around primary and secondary metros,” Ferrari says. “Ideally these suburban assets will be in submarkets that are insulated from new supply.”
While many apartment owners plan to buy as much as they purchased in 2018, if not more, most buyers still expect tough competition as they pursue new deals.
“It is still very difficult,” says Lance Swank, President of Sterling Group. “We have a defined structure and very defined return expectations that we stick to. Some of that is driven by our investment partners, but we are pretty rigid. We might underwrite 100 communities and go under contract with one.”
Buckingham Place Apartments was recently honored by the Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago at the 2018 Key Awards.
Each year, HBAGC honors outstanding achievements in housing design, architecture design, interior design, community design, landscape architecture and remodeling. Buckingham Place interior designer Eleni Interiors was honored with a total of six awards, including two for the interior design of Buckingham Place.
Community Design / Amenities – Honoring multi-family project amenity space and clubhouse facilities
Platinum Winner – Eleni Interiors
Interior Design – Honoring accomplishments in multi-family interior design
Platinum Winner – Eleni Interiors
For more information on our artfully designed community, please reach out to the Buckingham Place leasing office.
Brian Rogal, Bisnow Chicago Want to get a jump-start on upcoming deals? Meet the major Chicago players at one of our upcoming events!
The overall fundamentals in Chicago’s office and retail sectors declined in 2018 when compared with 2017, according to Avison Young’s new annual review and 2019 forecast, but both the industrial market and the CBD’s office sector were standouts, and saw significant growth in leasing velocity and construction. The employment picture was also bright last year, which could set the stage for expansion in several sectors in 2019. As of September 2018, employers in the Chicago metropolitan area had added approximately 35,100 jobs year-over-year, Avison Young said. Activity in the metro area’s office market was moderate during 2018, with much of it concentrated within the city’s central business district, which recorded a total of 9.4M SF leased through the first three quarters — compared with 5.6M SF in the suburbs. “Facebook, Google, Pinterest, Salesforce, Career Builder and Madison Capital have all recently announced major expansions in the CBD, which will increase local workforces as well as real estate footprints,” Avison Young said.
That growth has kept builders active in the CBD, and new developments garnered record-setting rents in 2018. Avison Young projects that downtown will see another 3.4M SF open up this year, 87% of it in the West Loop. The pace of construction will boost the amount of shadow space throughout much of the CBD as tenants sign deals for new spaces. Avison Young also projects that the vacancy rate, which had eased in the past year from 14.1% to 11.8%, will rise to 12.4% in 2019. Chicago’s industrial vacancy rate should keep falling, even as the pace of new construction picks up in 2019. Avison Young said 18M SF of industrial will be added in the next 12 months, much of it on spec, but it forecasts healthy leasing will sink vacancy to 5.9% next year, after hitting 6.3% in 2017.
January 23, 2019 Brian Rogal, Bisnow Chicago
The first wave of major development in the Fulton Market neighborhood is coming to an end, but a new one is just beginning. Sterling Bay 210 North Carpenter St., Chicago Sterling Bay set off the development explosion when it bought 1000 West Fulton, a cold storage building that towered over the once-industrial area west of the Loop, in 2012 for $12M and by 2015 transformed it into 1KFulton, the regional headquarters of Google. The influential tech firm’s arrival signaled that Fulton Market had become a true office submarket. “That gave everyone the green light,” Skender Vice President Clayton Edwards said. His firm recently built out a number of Fulton Market office spaces, and Edwards will be a featured speaker at Bisnow’s State of the Office event Feb. 14, which will explore what the future holds for the West Loop.
Developers renovated many of the industrial loft buildings around 1KFulton, which were quickly populated with creative users. Much of that renovation work is done, and developers have now kicked off construction on a set of new office towers, including ones built on spec, that will continue the neighborhood boom by placing more traditional users alongside Fulton Market’s creative and high-tech pioneers. McDonald’s decision to abandon its suburban Oak Brook campus in favor of a new 490K SF Fulton Market office building developed by Sterling Bay late last spring was a signal, from an iconic traditional business, that the neighborhood was seen in a new light. “The market has matured to the point where Fulton Market is no longer seen as an up-and-coming neighborhood that doesn’t have the credibility of a traditional Loop office address,” Sterling Bay Director of Leasing Michael Lirtzman said. “Tenants of all sizes and sectors are now actively seeking space in the area, ranging from startups to mature, Fortune 500 headquarters-type tenants.” Sterling Bay has also begun construction on a 19-story tower at 333 North Green St., and a 200K SF building at 210 North Carpenter, where Google has already agreed to occupy more than half the space. Courtesy of Gensler 333 North Green St., a new Sterling Bay property in Fulton Market.
Mondelez International, the maker of Oreo cookies, announced earlier this month it would move its headquarters from suburban Deerfield to 905 West Fulton St., a 108K SF complex that will combine historic facades with new design. Thor Equities began building it last summer, and its quick success in finding an anchor tenant gave other local developers another shot of confidence. Tishman Speyer bought a development site last December at 310 North Sangamon in Fulton Market, and will partner with developer Mark Goodman & Associates on the speculative construction of a 12-story office tower with 225K SF. The new buildings underway could attract more traditional office users that need large floor plates, the lack of which has kept many in the Loop, Edwards said. Unlike the recent past, which saw corporate behemoths like Google and McDonald’s take over entire properties, the next generation of office towers are likely to have multiple occupants. “We are seeing interest today from tenants in every kind of industry from creative and tech to banks, law firms, consulting firms and the professional service sector in particular has recently taken a keen interest in the market, which was not happening just 12 to 18 months ago,” Lirtzman said. The neighborhood does need more retail, along with more quick-casual eateries that bolster the fine dining of its world-famous Restaurant Row. Transportation also remains a challenge for companies going to Fulton Market, Edwards said. The opening of the Morgan Street stop on the Green Line in 2012 helped make the neighborhood a viable option for city dwellers, and the plans to open a stop on Damen Avenue in 2020 may push development farther west. Suburbanites taking the Metra trains to the Loop, however, still need to walk or take a bus to reach Fulton Market. That hasn't stopped tenants from putting stakes in the ground. In 2017, Skender was the first company to move into Sterling Bay's new Fulton West building at 1330 West Fulton St., and like many growing businesses, it saw moving out of downtown as a natural step. "Our old space at 200 West Madison was buttoned-up, because we were a relatively new firm, and we wanted to be taken seriously," Edwards said. Today Skender is one of the city's top construction firms, and does not worry about getting taken seriously. It recently topped out the Hyatt House Chicago Fulton Market District, which will open this summer, and built out offices for its fellow tenants in the now-full 1330 Fulton building, including The Climate Corp., Glassdoor and The AZEK Co. Edwards expects the energy and vibe of Fulton Market to continue drawing new office users. "It gets dark at 3 p.m. in the Loop during the winter due to all those 50-story towers, but out here we have openness, a lot of sunlight and a beautiful skyline." There is still some old stock left, but generally for companies that need between 20K SF and 40K SF, he said. Last fall, for example, Skender began reconstructing 939 West Fulton St., an old four-story timber loft building, into a 40K SF headquarters for Vital Proteins, a health supplements retailer. "But the biggest chunks of new office space in Fulton are now going to come from new development."
DES PLAINES, Ill. -- Buckingham Place Apartments celebrates successful opening year. The 267-unit luxury apartment community is an attractive choice for renters, situated just north of Downtown Des Plaines, ½ mile from the Cumberland Metra train station, and just 7 miles from O'Hare International Airport.
Buckinghan Place opened its doors in August, and celebrated with a grand opening event in November. Among the attendees were representatives from the City of Des Plaines, Nicholas and Associates, Wingspan Development, and Marquette Management.
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The amenity-rich building features a fitness studio with Wellbeats virtual fitness, tech café, social pub, demonstration kitchen, sports theater, outdoor basketball court, luxurious pool with sundeck and cabanas, outdoor grilling stations, pet spa, and more. Artfully designed by Eleni Interiors, the amenity spaces provide a unique, compelling environment for residents to socialize.
Luxury studio, 1, 2, and 3 bedroom apartment homes offer white quartz counter tops, white subway tile backsplash, 42-inch shaker style cabinetry, stainless steel appliances with French door refrigerator, and driftwood gray wood style flooring.
"Our goal is to redefine the quality of life for our residents," says CAMME award winning Property Manager Drennan Blaesing. "Buckingham Place's legacy will be shaped by our high standard for excellence and dedication to providing an exceptional living experience. We are thrilled to be the pioneer of a luxury lifestyle in the Northwest suburbs."
Naperville, Ill. -- Cushman & Wakefield has arranged a $12 million loan for the refinancing of River Square in the Chicago suburb of Naperville, Illinois.
The 58,677-square-foot retail property, located at 22 E. Chicago Ave., is 96 percent leased. Jeffrey Cohen of Cushman & Wakefield arranged the fixed-rate loan on behalf of Clarion Partners and a large overseas pension fund. Voya Investment Management provided the loan. NARE, a local real estate investor, sold the property to Clarion in October.
Chris Coleman, VP of Development at Wingspan, periodically shares his thoughts and observations on property development news.