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CHICAGO-The city’s department of planning and development has settled on Liberty Life Center, LLC to redevelop the historic Supreme Life Insurance Building and neighboring townhouses at the southeast corner of 35th Street and King Drive. Liberty Life Center, LLC will acquire the property, including the 22,692-sf office building and five townhouses totaling 13,000 sf, for $1 under an ordinance now being considered by the city council.

The city issued a request for proposals in October 2001, seeking a developer willing to redevelop the site for retail and office use while restoring the 80-year-old building facades.

Liberty Life Insurance Co. was the first African-American insurance firm in the northern US when it was established in 1919, according to the department of planning and development’s landmarks division. Two years later, the company moved into Roosevelt State Bank’s new building, according to the division, eventually buying it in 1924. A 1929 merger of three firms created Supreme Life Insurance Co.

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