The Chicago Tribune is a major landowner in the old industrial River West area, and the paper has recently decided to put its land to work. Back in mid-May, the company hinted at redeveloping some of its property, and even possibly erecting a second Tribune Tower, in order to squeeze more return out of its assets. A couple weeks later, the company announced that it was ready to lease five acres of its property along the Chicago River. However, company officials denied that it was looking to sell property at the Freedom Center location. The company has since split into two separate entities, and now Tribune Media Co. is serious about redeveloping seven acres of its property on Chicago Avenue.
Last week, Bloomberg Business week published a glowing profile of River North, and how the neighborhood has become one of the hottest office markets in the country. The River North area boasts 11 million square feet of office space, and has the lowest vacancy in the greater downtown area. The Tribune is a unique position to bring some of those office tenants across the river and onto its property, and to potentially become a major player in the office landlord game. Certainly, the company could redevelop the site to include retail and residential, but with River North’s office market being red hot at the moment, the Tribune could swoop in and cash in on the trend.
·Trib Media digs for gold along Chicago River [Crain’s]
·Tribune Media to redevelop property near Freedom Center [Sun-Times]
·Tribune puts North Side riverfront space on market [Crain’s]