CHICAGO- @properties Commercial just announced that they have been hired to lease the historic Marshall Field & Company building in downtown Oak Park. The five-story, 91,451-square-foot building at 1144 Lake St. has 26,000-square-feet of retail space available on the first floor and about 8,000-square-feet of office space available on the upper floors. It was built in 1929 as a miniature replica of the retailer’s flagship store on Chicago’s State St. and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988. Marshall Field left in 1986 and a Borders bookstore eventually took its place before closing in 2011.
“We’re still in the early stage of the process but we’re marketing it to the full spectrum of users,” including credit tenants or “more boutique-type users like high-end grocery stores” for the retail space, says Dan Stratis, vice president and managing broker for @properties Commercial. Stratis and Larry Cohn, senior broker, will represent the owner Water Tower Realty, but have also consulted with the Oak Park Local Development Corp., a nonprofit economic development agency that has taken an interest in the property and conducted tours of the site for brokers and other businesses. “The community wants a nice mix of tenants in there,” Stratis adds, especially since, as the anchor building on the downtown’s western edge, “it really is the gateway to Oak Park.”
“The market is very strong here. The recession was difficult on everyone but Oak Park seems to have done better than most places.” The development corporation reports that the town’s occupancy rate increased from 88% in 2010 to 91% last year, while the downtown rate increased from 92% to 94%. “Now that the recession is in the rear view mirror the downtown community in Oak Park should do even better. Oak Park has all of the amenities of living in the city but the comforts of living in the suburbs and attracts a lot of urban professional. And those are the places that retailers want to be.”