July 6, 2021
After nearly 40 years of making one expansion after another to our headquarters at 2011 Pershing Road, Raymond and Sidney Epstein, along with our former Chief Executive Officer, Mickey Kupperman, decided in the early 1980s to start looking for a new location to house the ever-growing organization.
Over the past decade, Epstein’s work had expanded beyond its industrial roots within the Central Manufacturing District to include high-profile commercial-oriented projects across the globe. Wanting to be closer to business clients in downtown Chicago, Raymond, Sidney and Mickey went in search of a new headquarters. They found the ideal building, but one that was in the then run-down Fulton Market area. All three saw the potential of 600 West Fulton as a vibrant Chicago neighborhood, one that was just blocks from The Loop. Foresight that is abundantly clear today as the Fulton Market District is clearly one of Chicago’s fastest growing communities.
But back in the early 80s, the neighborhood around 600 West Fulton was the home to numerous vacant industrial buildings and dilapidated structures. Raymond, Sidney and Mickey we’re not discouraged, however, and invested a little under $3.7 million to renovate the 9-story building, which was the home to Sears, Roebuck and Company from 1895–1905 and served as their main warehouse and distribution center.
Above photos: 600 West Fulton – 1982 Existing Conditions
The renovated space at 600 West Fulton kept much of the charm of the existing industrial loft building, which included ceiling heights ranging from 20-28 feet, dramatic sawtooth skylighting on the 9th floor, 10x10 inch yellow pine columns and beams as well as exposed brick walls. But still much work needed to be done to allow this former industrial warehouse space to serve as the headquarters for a global design, engineering and construction firm. Therefore, the façade was renovated to feature all new windows and the entrance was enlarged by opening up three bays to create a more profound face for the building. On the interiors, all new lighting, flooring as well as electrical and mechanical systems were added.
Above photos: 600 West Fulton – 1983 Renovation
Nearly four decades later, 600 West Fulton is still our home, and one in which we are continuing to help the current owners, Parkside Reality, with building improvements, including modernizing the building exterior and lobby and a new tenant amenity space.