Special Edition | Tales From the Front Line | August 24, 2020
Unlocking Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)
YL Small Group Discussion Series #2 “Entertainment in Real Estate”
ULI Chicago Young Leader’s hosted their second of a three-part Small Group Discussion Series, “Entertainment in Real Estate.” Guest Speakers included: Zack Cupkovic, Director of Capital Markets, R2 Companies and Eric Nordness, Managing Principal, Marquee Development LLC.
Eric Nordness from Marquee Development presented on his firm’s project in renovating Wrigley Field as well as developing and activating the surrounding land. In this development, Wrigley Field had been an acknowledged sports venue for entertainment for decades, but it had fallen woefully short in creating public space, hospitality venues and activities around the stadium. Much of the effort of creating Gallagher Way for movies and game day viewing as well as populating the existing Wrigleyville bars was to create an entertainment district that would operate as a vibrant area outside of Game Days. Eric also pointed to the importance of engaging local vendors in food/bev, including Four Corners, Big Star, Boka Group and others that represent Chicago. It has also allowed for balance in the Wrigleyville/Southport neighborhoods between fans, bar attendees, families and tourists.
Zack Cupkovic from R2 Development segued into a presentation on the future entertainment potential for one of their development sites, the Morton Salt building at Elston and Division. He went into the history of the building- where the long-term corrosion of the salt storage facility led to its functional relocation, but a desire by Morton Salt to retain their famous shed roof with their logo seen from the highway. Zack mentioned that his company had already invested in Goose Island and saw the vision for a district along the river, especially with the subsequent Riverwalk investment by the City of Chicago. The constraints of the building as an “Isosceles Triangle” also naturally lent itself to a performance venue, a path R2 is pursuing. Overall, the concerns for COVID-19 and what social distancing has meant for entertainment, outdoor space and the future of performance venues emerged in the Q and A portion, and will mean adjustments to how real estate approaches entertainment in the future
Summary written by Elle Ramel, Co-Founder, City Open Workshop