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Merit Partners sells massive mixed-use development on Northwest Side

Knickpoint founders Zain Koita and Matthew Sprayregen

Merit Partners sold a massive mixed-use development on the Northwest Side known as The Fields, The Real Deal has learned. The sprawling complex is being converted into apartments, retail, office and warehouse components.

The Chicago-based brokerage and development firm sold the 1.5 million-square-foot complex to New York-based Knickpoint Ventures. The property is spread over 21 acres at 4000 West Diversey Avenue.

Chicago-based Hubbard Street Group will retain a 50 percent interest in the 123-unit apartment portion.

Knickpoint founders Zain Koita and Matt Sprayregen declined to disclose the purchase price.

They said the goal is to create a live-work-play hub at the site. So far it includes self-storage, warehouses, office space and retail, including a Cermak Fresh Market. Crate & Barrel recently moved into 117,000 square feet of office space in the complex, which will also feature 700 indoor parking spaces.

Some 500,000 square feet of vacant flex office/retail space is yet to be developed. Koita said Knickpoint’s inspiration for the redevelopment will come in part from its experience on similar projects with previous employers, including the Groupon headquarters building at 600 West Chicago Avenue, along with Chelsea Market and Industry City in New York.

The deal marks the first acquisition in Chicago for Knickpoint, which owns properties in the New York and Miami areas.

David Knapp and Matt Graham of Eastdil Secured served as advisers to Merit; financing was arranged by Jeff Altenau and Zach Yarnoff of Eastdil Secured.

It is not far from where ComEd is building a $57.5 million office and warehouse complex in Avondale and where Coyote Logistics signed a 10-year lease extension on its 175,000-square-foot Chicago offices in Logan Square.

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