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CHICAGO-Jackson Lewis LLP has signed a lease to expand its office into 18,424 square feet on the 25th floor of 150 N. Michigan. The law firm will relocate to the 625,000-square-foot East Loop building in September. The company currently occupies 17,000 square feet at 320 W. Ohio in River North.

“Jackson Lewis was looking for a more central location downtown and to be closer to the courts,” says Monica Moore, of Jones Lang LaSalle, who along with Brad Despot represented building owner SEB Investment GmbH in the 10-year lease. “This building has access to the Chicago pedway system. Between access to Millennium Park and the courts, its offers the best of both worlds.”

Constructed in 1983, the diamond-shaped office tower was designed by Chicago-based A. Epstein and Sons International. Asking lease rates at the building are in the high-teens per square foot, net. The 41-story building is currently about 80% leased, Moore says. The building’s occupancy took a hit with the relocation of law firm McGuire Woods to 77 W. Wacker. The company, whose lease ended in December, had previously occupied four contiguous floors in the building.

Moore says Jackson Lewis will house 22 attorneys plus support staff out of the office, which will occupy some of McGuire Woods’ former space. “The key component to the deal was the value in the existing law firm conditions,” Moore tells GlobeSt.com. “They were able to reuse existing conditions with the benefit of minimal out-of-pocket costs, and we also provided flexibility for future expansion.”

The East Loop occupancy rate is around 86%, including sublease space, Moore says. “We’re seeing an increase in sublease, which is competition, but we’ve had some really positive momentum at the building,” she says. Other companies now based in the building include Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., which occupies 82,000 square feet as the largest tenant, and SmithAmundsen law firm, which has 64,000 square feet.

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