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CHICAGO-First Nonprofit Insurance Co. has signed on for 18,270 square feet at the 1.2-million-square-foot One South Wacker. The new lease at the building represents an upgrade to a class A property for the insurance company, which has been housed for the past two decades at 111 N. Canal St. in a similar amount of class B space.

The firm was represented by Studley senior managing director Lyle Levin, while building owner Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association was represented by Michael Curran of Jones Lang LaSalle in the deal.

“The location works great for the company because it’s right on Wacker, close to all the commuter lines, so it has good access for clients and employees to get to them,” Levin tells GlobeSt.com. “They looked at this an opportunity to take advantage of soft market conditions to go from a B building to an A building. It also has a lot of amenities.”

Amenities at the building include a conference center, parking, a restaurant and a health club. First Nonprofit signed an 11-year lease for its space in the property, which is about 85% occupied. The firm will move by spring into its space on the 23rd floor of the 40-story building, which is relatively close to its current facility, allowing for a smooth transition. The company was also able to make use of some existing conditions in the space, making the financial aspects of the deal even more attractive.

“Obviously they’re going to spend some money in this space, but it’s further cost savings and the difference goes back into the deal for the tenant,” Levin says. “Activity has been somewhat slow, but a lot of people are looking around for bargains out there and it seems like the majority of people are looking for space with existing conditions. If there are companies looking around and comparing different options, the one that needs a full build-out is at a disadvantage.

The property is located in Chicago’s West Loop submarket, where average asking lease rates are around $35 per square foot gross, according to CB Richard Ellis’s mid-year CBD office market report. Overall occupancy in the West Loop is near 86%, CBRE’s research says.

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