Harper Court sold for $112M

The University of Chicago will continue to control leases at Harper Court but the property is now owned by an international insurance firm.

The University of Chicago will continue to control leases at Harper Court but the property is now owned by an international insurance firm.

By LINDSAY WELBERS
Staff Writer

The University of Chicago sold ownership of Harper Court to one of Israel’s largest insurance institutions, while the university will retain a master lease for the entire development.

The university sold the 12-story building and parking garages to CLAL Insurance Company for $112 million. The city of Chicago approved the deal on July 25.

U. of C. declined to discuss the terms of the sale and master lease.

“The university has invested more than $30 million in Harper Court, including acquiring land for redevelopment and building out the office space,” university Director of Communications for Civic Engagement Calmetta Coleman said. “The university also provided a $21.5 million loan guarantee for construction of the Hyatt Place hotel and has invested tens of millions more in complementary revitalization projects surrounding Harper Court. The current market value of Harper Court has been enhanced by those investments, by the university’s master lease of Harper Court, and by the strong credit of the university.”

Hyatt Place Hotel was not included in the sale.

The university purchased the 12-story mixed-use project from its development partners, including Vermilion Development, JFJ Development and Canyon Johnson Urban Funds, for $98 million five days after the ribbon cutting ceremony last November.

The project was constructed using $23.5 million in Tax Increment Financing money, a publicly funded subsidy.

CLAL is a publicly traded company with over $40 billion in assets under management.

The university will continue to manage the building in a deal that allows it control of all the office, retail and parking space in Harper Court. It will continue to manage leasing space to current and future tenants.

The university declined to say what it paid for the master lease or if it lost money on the deal.

l.welbers@hpherald.com