Nick Siegel, partner for the Chicago region of Bridge Development Partners, said that 2020, despite its challenges, was a great year for his company. For the year, the Chicago office of the company leased just under 2 million square feet of space. Siegel said that this is a record for the Chicago office.
“It didn’t start out that way, though,” Siegel said. “In March and April, we were certainly nervous. We had a lot of questions back then. What we did during that 60-day period early on, though, was rely on some creative, differently structured leasing deals to stabilize some of our assets. We offered incentives such as a free couple of months rent to get tenants to sign leases during COVID.”
Once May began, though, Bridge Development saw a quick pickup in activity, Siegel said. And Siegel said that he expects this activity to only grow stronger throughout 2021.
“Everyone talks about Amazon,” he said. “But only 30 percent of our leasing activity last year was from Amazon. I was encouraged by that. We have a diverse market in the Chicago area. We have a lot of strong industries and tenants making up our market. We are resilient. We have a good manufacturing base. That can help us push through this.”