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Office News Highlights: Chicago Office Tower Sells for $210M Cash, Morgan Stanley Signs $1.5M Lease Expansion in Columbus, and More

Activity has picked up recently across multiple aspects of the office sector. For instance, major brokerages are looking at safe ways to reopen offices, while prominent office users are going one step further and concurrently planning to adapt to a partially remote workforce moving forward. At the same time, online searches for office spaces for lease are trending upward and notable lease deals have put an end to the dry spell in high-profile markets. Check out select highlights in office market news below.

225 W. Wacker Drive Sells for $210 Million in Cash

225 West Wacker Drive_Chicago office space for lease

225 West Wacker Drive, Chicago IL

South Korean investment firm Mirae Asset Global sold its Chicago Loop office tower to San Francisco-based Spear Street Capital. The property changed hands for $210 million in cash, a slight decrease from the $220 million that had been previously agreed upon in March.

Located on the Chicago River, the tower at 225 W. Wacker Drive incorporates 650,000 square feet of class A Chicago Loop office space. Originally built in the late 1980s, the high-rise was completely renovated in 2013, earning it a LEED Gold certification. Floor plates are 26,000 square feet, and on-site amenities include a fitness center, 230 below-grade parking spaces, ground floor retail and controlled access.

Last October, Spear Street Capital purchased another Chicago central business district property. The nearly 1-million-square-foot property at 500 W. Monroe St. commanded $412 million — the top 2019 office sale in the Midwest.

Morgan Stanley Expands Lease at Easton Commons in Columbus

easton commons office space in columbus ohio

4343 Easton Commons, Columbus OH

Gladstone Commercial announced the company had executed a lease expansion at 4343 Easton Commons. Morgan Stanley enlarged its footprint by another 16,000 square feet of office space in Columbus and will be the sole tenant of the 103,000-square-foot property beginning in August of this year and through December 2025.

Matt Tucker of Gladstone Commercial said that the company acquired 4343 Easton Commons “in an anchored multi-tenant portfolio acquisition along with 680 W. Shields Lane in Salt Lake City, where Morgan Stanley currently occupies 98,000 square feet of Class A space.”

He added, “Since we acquired the portfolio, Morgan Stanley has expanded their footprint at both the Columbus and Salt Lake City assets, reinforcing our anchored multi-tenant acquisition thesis that allows for flexible growth for our anchor tenants. It is also a reflection of the high quality and desirable locations of these assets that Morgan Stanley chose to grow their presence in our buildings.”

Columbus ranks among the former Rust Belt’s most successful comebacks. The city’s population increased by nearly 20% in a decade, and housing stock is up almost 10% since 2008. The city’s regional price parity also greatly contributes to Columbus ranking among the top 10 U.S. metros for millennials.

Dallas Investment Advisor Takes Larger Office in Response to COVID-19

At the close of May, Dallas-based Clare Market Investments LLC announced the firm’s relocation to a state-of-the-art, stand-alone office property near Love Field. Statements made by the company highlighted that the move was based on a desire to preserve the firm’s growth over the past year in a manner that allows it to maintain close contact with its clients. As a proactive response to changes required by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Clare Market chose to relocate to the larger facility at 4311 W. Lovers Lane in lieu of a conventional tower office space in Dallas.

“There were several reasons why we chose this particular time to relocate,” said Founder Keith Rhodus. “Our commitment to growth and expansion was a major influence. The new offices offer an expanded footprint, which affords us space to continue our growth. West Lovers Lane is an exciting and desirable part of town, surrounded by high-end retail, great restaurants, as well as professional offices, all within convenient proximity to Dallas Love Field Airport. Relocating to a stand-alone building affords us the ability to continue to serve our clients outside of a conventional office tower, in a less-crowded environment that we can closely monitor and control.”


Property images courtesy of Yardi Matrix.

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