McCormick Building at 332 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago
In 1996, an affiliate of Metropolitan Properties acquired the storied McCormick Building at 332 South Michigan Avenue. With the acquisition of this 20-story vintage building through its affiliate, Metropolitan Properties owned and controlled all three buildings fronting Michigan Avenue between Jackson Boulevard and Van Buren Street, including 310, 318 and 332 South Michigan Avenue. Poised to reposition the entire block, Metropolitan Properties evaluated the highest and best use for these assets. Ultimately, D’Angelo envisioned a revitalized boulevard fronting Grant Park, with vintage buildings being converted to residential use and new residential towers being erected on permissible sites. With its world-renowned Michigan Avenue address, historic architecture, and unobstructed, protected views of Grant Park and Lake Michigan, 332 South Michigan Avenue was an ideal first step to establishing the area as a viable luxury residential market. However, at the time the area was untested for residential use and Chicago-based banks and financial institutions were skeptical about the unproven residential demand and lack of amenities in the area. Therefore, Metropolitan Properties secured acquisition and redevelopment financing from the New York office of Lehman Brothers, and converted the upper six stories of the building into 78 luxury units known as The Residences of 330 South Michigan Avenue. The development, which was completed in 2000, sold out in less than six months.
As part of the redevelopment, Metropolitan Properties also stabilized the building’s 320,000 square feet of commercial space, which was more than 90 percent occupied at the development’s completion; the project also included repositioning the building’s 15,000 square feet of retail space, and constructing a 75-space indoor parking garage facility.
The project, which has attracted much attention and acclaim over the years, was awarded “The Best Creative Reuse Award in Chicago for 1997” by the Chicago Sun-Times.
The adaptive reuse of 332 South Michigan Avenue was a precedent-setting development that transformed a historic 20-story Class C office building into a vibrant mixed-use property, and proved to be a catalyst for future residential developments in the area.