State Takes Another Step in Future Sale of Thompson Center

Illinois officials are inching closer to selling a downtown Chicago building that houses state government offices, announcing the selection Thursday of a project manager to oversee the sale.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker said Ernst & Young Infrastructure Advisors, LLC, was chosen in a competitive process to help with the sale of the James. R. Thompson Center. They will also help with other related services, including relocation options for current employees, according to state officials.

The 17-story, curved-glass structure was designed by architect Helmut Jahn and opened in 1985. It was renamed for Illinois' longest-serving governor in 1993.

However, segments have fallen into disrepair and there are issues with heating and cooling. State officials say it's an expensive building to maintain.

“After years of neglect, the Thompson Center has outlived its useful life in its current state, requiring $17 million a year just to operate — and it’s time to generate value for the taxpayers from selling the building,” Pritzker said in a statement.

Pritzker signed legislation earlier this year authorizing the sale, which is expected to take two years.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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