Dominick's closings would hurt Inland REIT
Publication: Chicago Sun-Times
Date: November 20, 2002
Author: David Roeder
Word Count: 758
Column: COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE
Inland Real Estate Corp., a real estate investment trust based in Oak Brook, has been a stellar performer in the market. Its
stock, now at $9.90 a share, is up a whopping 890 percent for the year. But look out.
The REIT owns 128 commercial properties in Illinois, and 11 are anchored by a Dominick's. If the grocer's labor
problems force a closure of the stores, Inland, part of a web of companies organized under Inland Real Estate Group Inc.,
will be hurt the most among Chicago area commercial landlords.
Scott Carr, president of Inland's property management operation, acknowledged Dominick's is a big concern but didn't
want to speculate on the financial impact of a shutdown. "All the stores are under long-term leases to Dominick's and
they're all very good locations" that should attract grocers aspiring to enter the Chicago market, he said.
Carr said six of the locations are freestanding stores and five are in plazas with other tenants. He noted that the company
also has eight Jewel-anchored centers.
DEVELOPER DREAMS: Sun-Times' City Hall writer Fran Spielman noticed that developers filed plans to convert an old
office building at 1001 W. Van Buren, just north of the University of Illinois at Chicago, into 490 homes. Co-developer
Robert Berliner Jr., who owns the property with a group that includes retail leasing specialist Keith Lord, emphasized that
plans are in the early stage and that he's not about to test a slow market.
It would be one of the biggest residential conversions to hit the Near West Side and would include new construction on an
adjacent parking lot. Berliner said Goodwill Industries is the building's largest tenant.
AT THE MART: Know of a business that wants to lease a single floor of some 200,000 square feet? If the business can
wait until 2005, they can have the floor the Chicago Transit Authority will vacate at the Merchandise Mart. Thomas
Kennedy, executive vice president of the mart, which is owned by Vornado Realty Trust, said he's had several inquiries
about a full floor over the years.
Kennedy said WBBM-Channel 2 scouted the building at one point "but we haven't talked to them about anything lately."
For years, the mart was the headquarters for WMAQ-Channel 5. Kennedy assigned the leasing job to the mart's longtime
partner, CB Richard Ellis Inc.
BACK TO SCHOOL: Treading into a local market dominated by Northwestern and Roosevelt universities, DePaul
University is launching a real estate school. Starting in January, it'll offer an MBA concentration in real estate management,
and an undergraduate program is planned for fall 2003.
The school has reached its fund-raising goal of $1.2 million, with leading support coming from Richard Hanson, principal
of Mesa Development LLC, and Robert Wislow, chairman of U.S. Equities Realty LLC. Finance Prof. Susanne Cannon,
co-author of the textbook Modern Real Estate, is the school's director. "Our goal is to make DePaul the premier center
for real estate education in the Midwest," she said.
BRANCHING OUT: Sun-Times banking writer Tammy Williamson tells me that TCF Bank, which is dominant in Jewel
Food Stores, has decided it ought to plant banks in spots other than the supermarket. Minneapolis-based TCF will open
its second downtown bank at 29 E. Madison by year's end, and plans to locate another bank branch at the site of an old
gas station at Fullerton and Southport next year. It opened its first downtown branch at 120 S. Riverside last year. Dave
Creel, TCF senior vice president of marketing, said 156 of TCF's 186 branches in Illinois are in grocery stores. "It's a little
unbalanced. We need to fill in some holes," he said.
CALENDAR NOTE: The Neighborhood Capital Budget Group marks 15 years of looking out for community interests
Friday at the Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central Park. Drinks and hors d'oeuvres start at 5:30 p.m., for those
looking to party. (Gotta make real estate relevant to that 18-to-34 crowd.)
DOING THE DEALS: While million-dollar homes in Lincoln Park go unsold, the Heritage at Millennium Park, an elegant
57-story building going up at the southeast corner of Randolph and Wabash, has been signing sales contracts. Mesa
Development LLC said it sold six residences, three in the seven-figure range, in the last week. ... Newcastle Ltd. wants
offers by Nov. 27 on a premier 70-acre site at Interstate 94 and Lake-Cook Road, property that Baxter International Inc.
is selling. ... Tommy Gun's Garage Restaurant is moving from 1215 S. State to 2421 S. Wabash, a building it acquired in a
deal brokered by Camins Tomasz Kritt and Ann Anovitz Associates.
Copyright 2002 Chicago Sun-Times, Inc.