Moving Forward: Our VisionThe Association’s lease at 200 S. Michigan will expire in February 2017. We began to have some exciting conversations about how our space could better serve our members, students and staff in the future. “Focus on 2025” became the oft-repeated mantra. We believe that the move to 430 N. Michigan will allow us to better leverage the resources provided by the National Association of REALTORS®. The downtown area allows for ready availability of parking, public transportation and amenities for our members, students and staff. While this location is near the majority of our members who are located downtown and on the near north side, it also provides the most robust transportation options for all of our members. Additionally, when designing the office for our future, we wish to create an open, inviting and collaborative environment for our members, staff and students. We are focusing on creating flexible spaces to be used for a variety of purposes, including “touch down” stations for our members to utilize. We have made plans to allow for expanded technology, including improved Wi-Fi connectivity, cell phone signals for all major providers and improved A/V in classrooms. We are thrilled for our 13,500 members and 8,000 students to be beneficiaries of this new and improved, innovative environment.
The Timeline & ProcessThis process began in summer 2015 with the formation of C.A.R.’s Building Work Group, consisting of commercial and residential brokers, as well as property manager members. The Building Work Group’s mission was to recommend sites to the Board of Directors for discussion and approval. The 12 members of the Building Work Group and staff also selected a project manager (Jones Lang LaSalle), a furniture distributor (Henricksen) and a design firm (Gensler). C.A.R. developed an RFP for tenant representation, receiving 10 proposals and shortlisting four to present to the Building Work Group. The Building Work Group then brought two firms to the Board of Directors for approval. In September, the Board of Directors selected SVN Chicago Commercial to be our tenant representative. The directives given to SVN Chicago Commercial were:
- Chicago high-rise office
- Central location with transit options and parking in close proximity
- Class A & B buildings