|Old (and Vacant) Main Post Office - via Crains|
Five years after buying the empty Old Main Post Office, British developer Bill Davies has formed a joint venture with Sterling Bay Cos. in an effort to kick-start a $500 million redevelopment of the hulking West Loop structure.
The Chicago-based developer said it is teaming up on the project with Mr. Davies, who will contribute the building as his investment in the joint venture.
An office and retail redevelopment of the 2.7-million-square-foot structure is likely to cost about $500 million, said Sterling Bay Managing Principal Andy Gloor, who did not disclose financial terms. A spokeswoman for Mr. Davies declined to comment.
That figure does not include plans for about four acres of land along the Chicago River at the site, possibly for a residential project or more commercial development.
As Crain's reported last month, Walgreen Co. has looked at the site as it considers a potential move of its headquarters from north suburban Deerfield. But Mr. Davies, who bought the vacant building and adjacent land for $24 million in 2009, has yet to sign any tenants for the highly visible building, which straddles the Congress Parkway.This quagmire of a building has a history of grand plans that seem unrealistic (see old plan from Davies to build 120 story tower and other buildings). We've always thought that this building was destined to be the downtown Chicago casino for better or worse.
Bringing on Sterling Bay seems like a move to make legitimate progress and seems to pave the way for the "corporate headquarters" angle that has been discussed in more depth recently.
This is definitely not a done deal, but does seem like a positive move for those hoping that this enormous building gets used in some capacity.