Meridan Negotiates $66M Senior Mortgage for Chicago Retail Center

Meridian Capital Group L.L.C. has arranged $66 million in financing for a 178,700-square-foot shopping center in Chicago owned by Baker Development Corp. The loan was supplied by an unnamed balance-sheet lender.

September 16, 2011
By Nicholas Ziegler, News Editor

Coming off what industry experts have called a good year for retail — a Cushman & Wakefield report notes that “global retail markets have rebounded strongly during the last year” — Meridian Capital Group L.L.C. has arranged $66 million in financing for a 178,700-square-foot shopping center in Chicago. The owner is Baker Development Corp. and the loan was supplied by an unnamed balance-sheet lender.

“This loan was originally slated for CMBS execution,” Jacob Schmuckler, mortgage finance advisor with Meridian, said. “However, as the CMBS market cooled, we were able to leverage Meridian’s longstanding relationship with the lender to transfer the deal to the lender’s balance sheet. We also worked diligently to arrange the senior financing in tandem with the borrower’s negotiation of the mezzanine financing by efficiently coordinating with the lenders, third party service providers and legal counsel, to meet the client’s deadline.”

The shopping center is located at 2100-2196 North Elston Avenue, and features a 128,230 square foot Kohl’s, a 45,720 square foot Best Buy, and a 4,750 square foot Harris Bank.

The Cushman report notes that, as of May 2011, retail sales were up 8 percent year-over-year as customers began to deal with the aftermath of the recession. The Chicago market saw historic transactions, with the retailer Barneys New York taking occupancy of a retail building downtown for a near-record $1,200 per-square-foot price. Accordingly, new leasing activity for Chicago is expected to gain momentum through the remainder of the year as vacancy declines and landlords have the capability to hike rents as demand resurfaces.