News & Events
The Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation held its fourth annual Midwest Real Estate Challenge at the Standard Club of Chicago on Saturday, April 12. Students from DePaul University, University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Roosevelt University, University of Notre Dame, and Marquette University competed against each other through a live presentation and written report containing development plans for the former Marshall Fields/Macy’s Warehouse at 4000 W. Diversey just northwest of downtown Chicago. 4K Diversey Partners, LLC owns the property and Merit Partners, LLC is handling the management, leasing and redevelopment of the 21-acre parcel located at the intersection of Diversey and Pulaski. The property, boasting 1.5 million square feet of existing improvements, forms the western boundary of Logan Square.
Three judges – Ben Greazel, Senior Managing Director of the Real Estate Finance Group at NGKF, Andy Koglin, President of OKW Architects, and Bill Shiner, Founder and CEO of The Shiner Group– reviewed all of the presentations and then awarded Roosevelt’s team with the best overall plan. This is the second year in a row that Roosevelt has won the competition. Marquette University and University of Notre Dame tied for runners-up. Aaron Paris and Paul Fishbein, Partners of both Merit Partners and 4K Diversey Partners actively participated in the judging process.
The winning team from Roosevelt was comprised of students Andre Collins, Maggie Eison, Victor Fragoso, Liliana Gonzalez, Dion Hickles, Emmanuel Kinard, Andrew Savoy, and Eric Williams. They will be awarded with a $5,000 scholarship, sponsored by 4K Diversey Partners, LLC, as well as a trophy. In addition, they will be acknowledged at the Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation’s Annual Dinner in October, an event that attracts hundreds of the nation’s leading real estate executives.
“This competition gives college students a chance to create a comprehensive development plan for a very unique and historic space,” said Al Klairmont, President of Imperial Realty and one of the Foundation’s Executive Board Members.
The initiative was designed to provide students with a hands-on opportunity to apply what they are learning in their university courses to the real working world of real estate. Each team was paired with volunteer advisors, all of whom are leading Chicago real estate professionals. In addition, this year the Foundation added an advisory board comprised of students from John Marshall Law School who served as volunteer legal advisors to one student team. The teams, along with their advisors, determined what should be built on the property and provided a full analysis explaining their building plan as well as the effects their plan would have on the community. Roosevelt’s winning plan was deemed the most economically viable and most complementary to the unique uses of the surrounding site.