Lendlease (ASX: LLC), a global real estate group, along with co-developer The John Buck Company and partner Intercontinental Real Estate Corporation, today announced that Porte has been named Multifamily Development of the Year by REjournals. The two-tower, mixed-use project beat out four other finalists at the annual Illinois Real Estate Journal Awards, held on July 22 at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare Chicago in Rosemont, Ill.
Situated on a full city block in Chicago’s West Loop, Porte features 586 apartments, including a collection of rental townhomes, and ground-level retail space. The LEED Gold-certified property comprises two 17-story towers offering studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom units to the mix of professionals, growing families and rightsizing empty nesters that are attracted to the burgeoning neighborhood. The community also features a selection of two-story, two-bedroom townhomes, each with private outdoor spaces and private entrances. This mix of living options allows residents to grow within the development while enjoying the flexibility of the rental lifestyle in a highly amenitized building.
“We endeavored to create a unique residential experience in the West Loop that prioritized community and placemaking above all else,” said Ted Weldon, executive general manager of development for Lendlease’s Chicago office. “That’s why we’re so honored to receive this award, which recognizes how we delivered on that goal despite the challenges posed by the pandemic.”
Porte began pre-leasing in March 2020 – just as COVID-19 was declared a pandemic. Despite coming online during this uncertain period, the on-site leasing and management teams successfully pivoted, offering live virtual tours via FaceTime and recorded video tours through Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and the Porte website.
A sense of community was maintained during the height of the pandemic, with resident programming shifting to virtual and socially distanced formats. These collective efforts, which included online cooking classes and book clubs as well as outdoor fitness classes and film screenings on Porte’s 1-acre pool deck, resulted in a strong first year for the property, which today is 88% leased.
“Porte is a very special property, delivered during a challenging time,” said Ariana Rasansky, senior vice president and head of residential management at The John Buck Company. “We’re thrilled the judges saw what our residents already know – that this is a one-of-a-kind residence in Chicago.”
Connectivity to the surrounding neighborhood was a guiding design principle for the project team. The developers collaborated with G|R|E|C Architects to create a stepped, three-tier facade that transitions from glass on the upper floors to masonry at street level. This mix of materials helps maintain the aesthetic of the existing streetscape and complements the post-manufacturing architecture of the surrounding neighborhood.
“Architects, designers and union members across the trade spectrum collaborated to deliver a first-class multifamily building that integrates seamlessly into the rich fabric of Chicago’s West Loop,” said Joseph A. Sweeney, regional director – asset management, at Intercontinental Real Estate Corporation. “Receiving this accolade and recognition is icing on the cake.”
A block-long mural adorning the building’s eastern facade further reinforces Porte’s connection to place by paying homage to Oprah Winfrey, whose eponymous talk show was filmed nearby. The development team commissioned the composition from B_Line Projects, Chicago’s largest curator of public art murals, who worked with five celebrated artists to bring their distinct visions to life in one unified masterpiece. This is just one example of Porte’s commitment to enriching the neighborhood and its community through art.
Porte’s two towers were positioned to maximize natural light and connectivity with the neighboring 2.7-acre Mary Bartelme Park, which houses a fountain plaza, children’s play area, dog park, open lawn area, viewing hill and seating. The community is also steps away from Randolph Street’s famed restaurant row and numerous shops throughout the West Loop. The Kennedy and Eisenhower expressways offer convenient access to the site, as do the Ogilvie Transportation Center, Union Station and several CTA bus and rail lines connecting to the Loop and Illinois Medical District.
For more information, visit www.porteapts.com.
Lendlease (ASX: LLC) is a global real estate group with operations in Australia, Asia, Europe and the Americas. Our purpose is to create value through places where communities thrive.
Headquartered in Sydney, Australia, and listed on the Australian Securities Exchange, Lendlease has approximately 9,500 employees internationally.
Our core capabilities are reflected in our operating segments of Development, Construction and Investments. The combination of these three segments provides us with a sustainable competitive advantage and allows us to provide innovative integrated solutions for our customers. Our integrated approach means we harness the expertise in infrastructure, design, development, investments and management to deliver a project from conception to completion.
In the US, Lendlease brings over 60 years of global experience to bear in urbanization, communities and infrastructure development. Leveraging our placemaking expertise and integrated business model, we are committed to delivering transformational urbanization projects and investments in gateway cities that generate social, environmental and economic value. For more information, visit www.lendlease.com.
About The John Buck Company:
Founded in 1981, The John Buck Company (“JBC”) has an established track record and reputation as a premier, vertically-integrated real estate investment, development and operating company focused on major U.S. urban markets. Since inception, JBC has made principal investments in assets comprising more than $8 billion of gross value and acquired, developed, or redeveloped over 45 million square feet of office, multifamily, residential and mixed-use properties. For more information, visit www.tjbc.com.
About Intercontinental Real Estate Corporation:
Intercontinental Real Estate Corporation is an SEC Registered Investment Adviser with decades long experience in real estate investment, finance, development, construction management and asset management. Since 1959, Intercontinental and its affiliates have managed, developed, or owned collectively over $14 billion in real estate property. Today, Intercontinental manages a real estate portfolio of approximately $10 billion for its clients. The Intercontinental portfolio is diversified both by robust property mix and by geography. Fund strategies actively seek opportunities to invest in both Core and Core-Plus properties, as well as in Value-Add operating properties and development projects. For more information, visit www.intercontinental.net.
About G|R|E|C Architects:
G|R|E|C Architects is a world-class, national studio of diverse experts known for redefining environments by employing responsive, artistic and integrated architectural methods. Based in Chicago, G|R|E|C develops meaningful spaces by creating experiences for people where they live, work and play. G|R|E|C specializes in sectors including hospitality, high-rise residential, commercial and mixed-use, and interior design for corporate environments. For more information, visit www.grecstudio.com.
Porte Exterior: Situated on a full city block in Chicago’s West Loop, Porte features a facade that transitions from masonry at street level to glass on the upper floors – a design intended to maintain the character of the existing streetscape and to complement the surrounding architecture. Photo credit: Jill Paider.