BofA to Anchor Tower in Chicago’s West Loop

Bank of America Corp. will be the lead anchor tenant at 110 N. Wacker Drive, a 51-story, Class A office building to be built on the river in downtown Chicago by The Howard Hughes Corp. and joint venture partner Riverside Investment & Development.

BofA will take almost 500,000 square feet, or more than a third of the total 1.4 million square feet. JLL represented BofA in the deal, while CBRE represented the developers.

We will be consolidating our teams from other offices in the downtown Chicago area into this new site,” a Bank of America spokesperson told Commercial Property Executive, though she declined to be more specific.

The location, across the street from Chicago’s Lyric Opera, reportedly is the last premier office site in Chicago offering a prominent downtown riverfront location. The building’s architect is Goettsch Partners. CPE last reported on this proposed tower in March, when the Chicago Plan Commission approved the project.

“Our opening is now set for late 2020, with construction expected to begin in the spring of 2018,” Hughes CEO David Weinreb said in a prepared statement. “With city approval and a meaningful portion of the building pre-leased, 110 North Wacker is well on its way to becoming a reality.”

Currently on the site is a 6-story Class B office building, completed in 1956, that’s the headquarters of General Growth Properties. A GGP spokesperson told CPE that the nation’s number-two mall owner has not finalized its relocation plan yet, but implied that a plan should be in place by the beginning of July.

Read into this what you will, but last week Fortune.com reported that GGP CEO Sandeep Mathrani had hinted during a conference call that GGP might be considering a sale of the company or the sale of some assets, in conjunction with a special dividend. Mathrani reportedly is frustrated that, with the bricks-and-mortar retail sector struggling as much as ever, GGP’s stock price does not accurately reflect the company’s position as an owner of mostly highly profitable malls.

Images courtesy of Howard Hughes Corp.