AT&T Illinois has decided to bring another 500 employees to downtown Chicago, according to Mayor Rahm Emanuel and company president Paul La Schiazza. The company plans to pull the employees out of suburban workplaces such as their Hoffman Estates campus and move them into the headquarters at 225 West Randolph St. Although thousands of their employees will remain in the suburbs, AT&T joins a growing number of companies, including Google and Sears, which have increasingly migrated from sprawling suburban campuses to the glass towers and rehabbed historic buildings in the CBD. AT&T currently has about 3,900 employees working in the city.
The move also gives Mayor Emanuel another reason to brag. According to the mayor’s office, during his term “more than 80 companies have announced job increases in Chicago, including 19 corporate headquarter relocations.”
Suburban landlords may have begun to feel the pressure brought about by these corporate migrations. According to second quarter research just published by Studley, a commercial real estate firm, in the suburban Northwest Corridor “the average class A asking rent posted a sharp 6.9% quarter-on-quarter decline to $19.07-per-square-foot, the lowest average asking rent since the 1990s.”
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