Client story

The City of Chicago makes the right moves for a cost-effective office consolidation

The City of Chicago consolidated two office spaces into a new, efficient space—without tapping the City treasury.

Spotlight

The City consolidated two legacy office spaces into an updated facility with amenities and productivity features.

Size

Consolidation of two offices totaling 437,767 square feet into one 295,000-square-foot space.

Value

Tenant improvement allowance covering 100% of all costs of the project.

Location

Downtown Chicago

For decades, the City of Chicago had housed its legal, transportation, health, aviation and other departments in multiple downtown Chicago offices. When its lease for 263,000 square feet at its largest downtown facility approached expiration, the City began to consider whether it should remain in outdated space or relocate.  A second downtown lease renewal, for 175,000 square feet at DePaul Center, was also on the horizon.

Rather than renew the two leases, the City decided to consolidate its offices into space better suited for modern government. Given the complexities of the Chicago office market and the challenges of consolidation, the City, through a competitive bid process, selected JLL to assist.

“Having the right team was the key to exiting a 25-year-old workplace and moving to a customized space with brand-new furnishings—with no extra cost to taxpayers.”

David Reynolds, Commissioner, Department of Assets, Information and Services, Chicago, IL
Solving the consolidation conundrum

Over the course of a year, the project team analyzed the workspace requirements of the various departments to be relocated, and partnered with a WBE architect to visualize space layouts.

Space requirements in hand, JLL helped the City create a request for proposal (RFP) that outlined their space, training and storage needs that was offered to more than a dozen landlords throughout Chicago. As a result of the detailed occupancy planning, the City’s RFP sought a total of 295,000 square feet of space—24% less space than it previously occupied.

After comparing the shortlisted space proposals, the City selected 2 N. LaSalle. Through strategic negotiations, the City was able to lease its new space at a very competitive rental rate.

Managing a smooth build-out

The City collaborated with JLL to manage the myriad details of the build-out of the 2 North LaSalle space, such as ensuring the right quantities of fixtures and furnishings. Partnering with a minority-owned business that managed the construction, JLL helped ensure compliance with the City’s building and zoning requirements. The project team also ensured that the City met and surpassed the construction contractor participation goals of 6% women-owned and 26% minority-owned businesses. Phase One achieved 14.6% women-owned business participation and 34.8% minority-owned business participation.

Through creative strategies and smart negotiating, the City of Chicago secured attractive space while reducing its occupancy costs at a time of significant fiscal constraints. Looking ahead, the new office positions the City to attract the best and brightest talent in better times ahead.