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CHICAGO-Two years of free rent will precede a 10-year lease renewal on 283,530 sf of space at 30 N. LaSalle St., a block southwest of City Hall. The $43-million deal begins at the expiration of the current lease in September 2005, but the city believes it will save $12 million in free rent.

Michael C. McCue, commissioner of the city’s department of general services, says the new deal with Equity Office Properties Trust was the result of a year-long process that included a request for proposals for three different space blocks—100,000 sf to 150,000 sf, 250,000 sf to 300,000 sf and 400,000 sf to 450,000 sf. In addition, McCue says the city wanted to see whether they could get a better break with a 15-year extension rather than a 10-year deal.

While the city capitalized on a soft Downtown office market, consolidating more space into a 400,000-sf space block and cutting a 15-year deal was not as economical as first thought, McCue indicates.

The result was the 10-year extension at the 43-story office building, which after the two years of free rent, will start at $15 per sf with cost-of-living escalators, McCue tells GlobeSt.com. The city occupies nearly 30% of the 966,000-sf asset.

The lease is expected to be approved by the city council Wednesday after getting a favorable recommendation from the committee on housing and real estate Monday.

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