Economic Impact Study

By: | July 05, 2013

Last year, BOMA/Chicago commissioned a research study to analyze the economic impact of our building members. This report was developed to better understand our members’ economic value to the City of Chicago, as well as glean critical information on the state of Chicago’s commercial real estate industry. It was also intended to expand upon the original Economic Impact Study commissioned in 2006.

We are pleased to share the final 2012 BOMA/Chicago Economic Impact Study with you. Please click here to view the full report and here to access the Executive Summary.

This report draws insights on a variety of topics, including: member market share, building rents and operating expenses, buildings’ sustainability efforts, taxation and more. Some of the key highlights include: 

BOMA/Chicago members maintain a solid footprint in Chicago’s office building market and are a driving force of the City’s economy. Member buildings:

  • Represent more than 141.5 million square feet of office space;
  • Are home to more than 10,000 business tenants supporting more than 72,000 direct and indirect jobs, in addition to tenants’ employees;
  • Contribute $3.5 billion to the Illinois economy; and
  • Account for nearly 80% of total consumer spending in the Loop.

BOMA/Chicago member buildings are among the greenest in the U.S., undertaking significant voluntary energy efficiency measures in a city that does not mandate energy usage reductions.

  • Chicago has more LEED-certified square footage than any other U.S. city. 
  • 91.1% of Chicago buildings with a LEED designation and 89.7% of buildings with an ENERGY STAR® rating are BOMA/Chicago members. 

BOMA/Chicago buildings continue to struggle with a heavy real estate property tax burden in comparison to other major markets.

  • As a percentage of base rent, commercial office buildings in Chicago pay higher property taxes than similar buildings in most other major metropolitan markets. 
  • In the last five years, property taxes on average have accounted for nearly 70% of operating expenses paid by commercial office buildings, more than double the percentage of 25 years ago.

Moving forward, this report and the data contained within will be important tools for our government affairs efforts as we continue to advocate on your behalf. We encourage you to review the report and share any feedback or questions you may have with us.

BOMA/Chicago would like to thank the leadership of the Information Committee and Tax Committee for seeing this important initiative through to fruition.

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