URW Reveals Plans for Mall-to-Mixed-Use Conversion

The redevelopment will include new residences, restaurants, retailers and wellness amenities.

New Westfield Old Orchard rendering. Image courtesy of Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield

Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield has released the new vision for the Westfield Old Orchard in Skokie, Ill.  Although the company is at the start of the redevelopment, plans include new apartments as well as retail, entertainment, dining, market and health and wellness amenity space additions.

An open-air plaza with a park and event space are also part of the plans, opening a space for social gatherings, concerts, festivals, farmer’s markets and other local events.

Detailed plans for the new multifamily homes are anticipated to be released in early 2024 with openings planned to begin in 2026. Along with the residences, new dining spaces as well as wellness and outdoor amenities will follow a similar timeline.

First steps for the multiphase development include renovations to the existing shopping center as well as the opening of restaurants and retail options. Barnes & Noble will return to Westfield Old Orchard, and a Bloomies, Louis Vuitton and curated shopping experience at Bloomingdale’s are set to open.

In 2023, the former Lord & Taylor space will continue being redeveloped into a home furnishings, fashion and entertainment space.

The Village Board at the North Shore destination originally dedicated Old Orchard as an Illinois Business District earlier this year. Westfield committed more than $100 million towards transformations of Old Orchard.

Sustainability practices in Illinois

Along with the new development ideas for the Westfield Old Orchard updates and upgrades, Westfield also included sustainability commitments consistent with the Village’s Environmental Sustainability Plan. Strategies for sustainably redeveloping the Old Orchard include using renewable energy, biophilic design, natural materials and biodiversity.

Sustainability practices across Illinois have held large importance in new developments. Each year that the U.S. Green Building Council has quantified the number of projects to receive a LEED certification, Illinois has ranked in the Top 10 States for its buildings. In 2021, the state received certifications across six properties totaling 2,115 units, the largest of which, Wolf Point East in Chicago’s Near North Side submarket, received a LEED Silver certification.

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