ML Realty Plans Major Chicago-Area Industrial Project

The development will feature coveted 40-foot clear heights in the O'Hare submarket, which accounted for one-third of the city's leasing activity in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Architectural rendering of ML Realty’s Bensenville, Ill., project. Image courtesy of ML Realty Partners

ML Realty Partners has just revealed that it plans to develop two industrial facilities on recently amassed land in Bensenville, Ill. The project will result in the addition of an aggregate 605,300 square feet of Class A offerings in the suburban Chicago area.


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ML Realty will erect the two new buildings along Route 83 and Devon Ave. in DuPage County, in the heart of the O’Hare submarket, within close proximity of Chicago O’Hare International Airport and 25 miles northwest of downtown Chicago. The two facilities will be designed to accommodate a variety of users, with needs ranging from as little to 75,000 square feet to as much as 307,700 square feet.

The Bensenville project will also offer heavy auto parking, as well as considerable trailer parking. Most notably, however, the development will feature rarely found and highly coveted 40-foot clear heights. “The demand for 40-foot clear has been evident by our robust activity for this project,” Tim Geisler, vice president with ML Realty Partners, told Commercial Property Executive. “Our 40-foot clear option, coupled with extremely tight vacancy in the O’Hare submarket, makes this an ideal time to deliver this product.”

Firing on all cylinders

ML Realty expects to break ground on the two-building Bensenville project this summer and all signs in the market indicate that the development will likely receive a warm reception. In the fourth quarter of 2020, the long-solid metropolitan Chicago industrial market recorded its 44th consecutive quarter of positive absorption, according to a report by Newmark, and O’Hare submarket leasing activity surpassed that of all other submarkets, accounting for nearly 35 percent of the leases signed in the city. The Chicago industrial market’s strong performance during the pandemic, buoyed by certain fundamental strengths, bodes well for its performance in the future.  

“Thanks to Chicago’s impressive transportation infrastructure, which includes two international airports, an extensive rail gateway, North America’s largest inland port and access to 28 of the 30 major cities in the Midwest within an eight-hour drive, the city yet again proved itself as a premier business location,” according to the Newmark report. “The industrial market is anticipated to remain healthy, with strong leasing activity, stable vacancy rates and consistent new construction development as industrial occupiers continue to expand in 2021.”

ML Realty plans to complete construction of the Bensenville development in the spring of 2022. Cawley Chicago, which represented the real estate investor in its acquisition of land for the project, will spearhead leasing for the two buildings.