Last year, the McDonald’s Corporation heeded the call of the millennial workforce and moved its headquarters from suburban Oak Brook, Illinois to the Fulton Market District in downtown Chicago.

Now, the founder of the Paul Mitchell hair products company has purchased the 80-acre property. It’s still unclear what John Paul DeJoria’s plans are for the site, which includes a 331,630-square-foot headquarters building, its 130,484-square-foot Hamburger University and a 218-room Hyatt hotel.

It was also was one of 10 sites the city of Chicago submitted in its 2017 bid to lure Amazon’s second headquarters, according to Crain’s Chicago Business.

The article points out that suburban-to-city corporate relocations have left many sprawling suburban Chicago office properties vacant and waiting to be leased by new tenants or redeveloped into new uses. Some are still languishing and inflating vacancy rates in the suburbs, but others are getting new leases on life:

  • Chicago-based developer Franklin Partners renovated the vacant 354,000-square-foot former OfficeMax headquarters in Naperville and is hunting for new tenants there.
  • And in Hoffman Estates, a New Jersey developer bought the vacant 1.6 million-square-foot former AT&T campus with a plan to redevelop it into a 150-acre mixed-use “metroburb” with offices, retail and restaurant space.
  • In Schaumburg, the 225-acre former Motorola Solutions campus is being turned into several new uses including an assisted living and memory care facility, luxury apartments and a Topgolf venue.

CoreNet Globals might want to learn more from a recent Global Summit session on the move.