RAVENSWOOD — The $40 million redevelopment of the Ravenswood Sears building is finished, and people can start moving into its 50 apartments as early as next month.
Developer Springbank Capital Advisors announced plans in 2017 to redevelop the former department store, 1900 W. Lawrence Ave., into apartments and retail space. Architecture firm Gillespie Design Group designed the project, which was built by Summit Design + Build, a firm that specializes in adaptive reuse of older buildings.
The building is one of seven original Sears stores built in the 1920s. The store permanently closed in 2016. For-profit college DeVry University leased about 17,500 square feet on the ground floor in 2018 and have since moved in.
Construction on the retail segment of the project was completed in November, and the residential component was completed in January, said Summit project executive Andy vanWaardenburg.
“With less and less real estate available, more developers are looking at taking an existing albatross like the Sears building and turning it into something that is vibrant and full of life again,” vanWaardenburg said. “To me, personally, there’s nothing more fulfilling than to take something old, like the Sears building, which was built like a concrete bomb shelter, and make it a welcome addition to the neighborhood again.”
One-bedroom apartments at the renovated property start at $2,050 a month, two-bedrooms start at $2,500 a month, three-bedrooms start at $3,600 a month and a townhome-style loft, with two or three bedrooms, will cost $2,900-$3,850 per month.
The property is being managed by CA Ventures, which partnered with Springbank on the redevelopment.
“The first people should be moving in by April 1 and we are already at like 40 to 50 percent leased up over there,” said Maggie Moffat, CA Ventures’ leasing manager. “I just started showing it three weeks ago, and apartments have been going insanely quick.”
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