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Outlook Remains Uncertain for Chicago Office Sector

Chicago CBD office market fundamentals continued to weaken throughout 2022, reported Transwestern’s Caitlin Ritter. Net absorption for the year hit negative 1,182,826 square feet, while vacancies continued to climb to historic highs.  

“Chicago’s office market outlook remains uncertain with signs of trouble ahead,” Ritter wrote. “The combination of new inventory, the large blocks of space left behind by relocating tenants, and the office sector’s struggles with remote and hybrid work, have led to significant uncertainty. The rapid rise in interest rates, fears of an economic recession, and the sharp downturn in the tech sector could turn the headwinds into a full-blown storm.” 

However, Ritter noted “plenty of hopeful signs, the brightest being Google’s plans to take over the James R. Thompson Center and the ‘rapidly developing Fulton Market area.” She added, “Chicago’s resilient, diverse economy and large talent pool will continue to foster growth and attract dynamic companies.” 


Inside The Story

Transwestern's Ritter

About Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny serves as Senior Content Director for Connect Commercial Real Estate, a role to which he brings 13-plus years’ experience covering the commercial real estate industry and 30-plus years in business-to-business journalism. In this capacity, he oversees daily operations while also reporting on both local/regional markets and national trends, covering individual transactions across all property types, as well as delving into broader subject matter. He produces 15-20 daily news stories per day and works with the Connect team and clients to develop longer-form content, ranging from Q&As to thought-leadership pieces. Prior to joining Connect, Paul was Managing Editor for both Real Estate Forum and at American Lawyer Media, where he oversaw operations at both publications while also producing daily news and feature-length articles. His tenure in B2B publishing stretches back into the print era, and he has served as Editor in Chief on four national trade publications. Since 1999, Paul has volunteered as the newsletter editor of passenger rail advocacy groups (one national, one local).

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