Michigan Avenue, Chicago Apple Store retail parcel now up for sale by landlord

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The landlord behind Apple's flagship Michigan Avenue store in Chicago is putting the building up for sale, only months after its completion and opening.

Walton Street Capital has turned to Eastdil Secured to market the store, along with 10,000 square feet of retail space in 401 N. Michigan Avenue, a 35-story tower next door, the Wall Street Journal said on Tuesday. Sources for the paper said that Walton is aiming to generate as much as $175 million.

In 2017 the company paid $370 million for the Apple store and the whole of 401, the former still being under construction at the time. Walton is expected to hold on to 401's office space.

Last week Eastdil was allegedly talking with potential buyers for the Apple store at the Mipim real estate conference in Cannes, France.

Due to its clout, Apple is currently paying a rent "well below" the average $400 to $500 per square feet of other businesses in the Michigan Avenue area, the Journal's sources claimed. A change in landlords could affect rates, though Apple is one of the few U.S. retailers thriving as more shopping moves online, even able to produce a "halo" effect with nearby stores.

Apple Michigan Avenue opened in October to much fanfare, including a visit by CEO Tim Cook and retail head Angela Ahrendts. Shortly after it launched, however, the store's glass facade was responsible for some migratory bird deaths, which forced the company to dim lights.

A glitch in the roof's heating system required Apple to cordon off areas with falling snow and ice. A window at the store developed a crack, which grew larger over time given the temperature swings, before it was replaced.