The Commercial Cafe blog has drilled down its research into the most expensive (tax-wise) buildings in Chicago, and if you could consider receiving the biggest tax bill to be “winning” — the Willis Building, the city’s tallest tower, receives the top prize, shelling out $28 million in taxes last year, the highest (by far) in the city.
And these may rise even more once building owner Blackstone completes the building’s first major renovation in its 43 year history, a $500 million project overseen by design-build firm Turner Clayco. (See here for subcontractor qualification information.)
The building’s 2016 tax numbers are 7.09% higher than what they were in 2015, when current owner Blackstone bought it for a record $1.3 billion. It’s easy to see just how valuable the property is–the other contenders on our list pay significantly lower taxes than Willis Tower, with none of them reaching the $20 million mark.
Here’s the list with the other top taxpayers in Chicago:
And their location — not surprisingly most of the structures are in the Loop. You can see a map at this link.
Regarding the Willis Tower transformation, a news release issued in February says approximately 460,000 sq. ft. of existing space within the tower will be
reconfigured. This includes 150,000 sq. ft. of space for exclusive tenant use, including a full-service fitness center, expansive tenant lounges, private event space and concierge services “to create an inspiring and energetic work environment.”
The plan also calls for more than 300,000 sq. ft. of new retail, dining and entertainment space to be added to the base of the building, and a new 30,000-sq. ft. outdoor deck
and garden space.
“With this historic investment the Willis Tower will remain a vibrant and modern icon that inspires both young and old for generations to come,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement. “But more than that – today Blackstone is doubling-down on its confidence in the future we are building in the city of Chicago.”
Blackstone and Equity Office’s vision for the new Willis Tower was brought to life by the Chicago office of Gensler, a global San Francisco-based design firm. Gonzalez Architects designed the tenant-only office amenities, and Los Angeles-based Hetzel Design is overseeing the design concepts for the Skydeck,
Work to transform the tower will create an additional 2,500 jobs, the announcement said.