Monday, October 03, 2005

Here is the note I sent to DevCorp about Gateway development and the rather sad response:

Good Afternoon,

I live near Fargo and Greenview and I pass through Gateway Center's bus terminal every day going to and from work. Recently, I noticed that there has been a great deal of activity on the lower level in the southwest wing that faces the bus depot. I am quite interested to know what businesses are setting up shop. Any information you have would be greatly appreciated.

Also, I initially tried to send this note to info@devcorpnorth.org but it was returned accounting to the mailbox being full.

Sincerely,

Michael K

Dear Michael -

Thanks for the email and follow up. I'll make sure that the info account gets cleared so others don't get that error message in the future. Based on a recent email from the leasing agent for Gateway, this is what I know:

An ordinance approving the vertical subdivision of the 3-story commercial building at Gateway Centre Plaza was passed at the September 14 city council meeting. Upon obtaining a recordable document, the closing will be scheduled for the sale to Life Storage Centers. Life Storage Centers is an upscale operator of environmentally controlled public storage space that will occupy approximately 104,000 square feet on the Paulina level of Gateway with their main office and retail sales at 7524 N. Paulina facing the plaza. Anticipated opening is January 2006.

On September 2, 2005, Spirit Halloween Stores opened for business in the 10,000 square foot space between Marshalls and Dominick's. This is a temporary lease through November 15, 2005. The leasing company is trying to identify a permanent tenant for this space.

There are currently three (3) leases and one (1) letter of intent currently under negotiation for space at the Gateway Centre and Gateway Centre Plaza.

The construction of the pedestrian walkway which will connect to the new Howard Street Terminal with the Gateway Centre atrium will be coordinated with the CTA during construction of their new building. Depending on the CTA timeline, the leasing agents do not foresee this construction beginning until 2007.

Hope this helps

Kimberly

A storage facility? That's the best we can do? I thought we were trying to increase foot traffic and retail sales. Long term storage isn't the kind of bustling pedestrian business we need. If we're serious about attracting better business to this area we need to do far better than this. No wonder there are no "Coming Soon" signs. Noone wants to be Evanston's closet. What a joke.

3 comments:

james said...

The challenges of renting that space are considerable. In their position, Devcorp will take anyone that comes along, within reason.

You're right that those choices won't always reflect a terribly productive future for the retail that center was designed for. I'm glad to see a tenant, and like you I know the future can and should hold better things.

nico's mom said...

Kimberly wrote:

>"There are currently three (3) leases and one (1) letter of intent currently under negotiation for space at the Gateway Centre and Gateway Centre Plaza."

Wonder what these are...? I guess it's worth checking back with her regularly to show her that the community is interested and keeping an eye out.

Also, I was wondering what if any impact the storage place might have on some of the other storage businesses in RP, especially the Public Storage on Jarvis (where I now rent space). I've noticed lots of those Public Storage places seem to be going out of business around Chicago. If the place in Gateway runs the place on Jarvis out, and something better comes to replace it on the much more pedestrian friendly Jarvis, that might be a good thing. (Except that the Gateway place would have to hire the nice lady who works at Public Storage...)

Michael K said...

Nico's mom,

That would be an ideal change. Business seems to be picking up on Jarvis since they closed the Liquor store. The derelicts don't hang around so much anymore. If only something would go in on the other side of the tracks to sort of "round out" that block. It looked like they were doing work in one of those store fronts but I haven't seen any progress in a while.

By the way, my wife swears by the mango drink they make at the little Indian place across the street from there.