As seen in the Itasca Chamber of Commerce Business Guide & Directory
Office designs continually evolve to meet the needs of each generation’s workforce and to accommodate the tools they use. The days of rows of typist lined up in a typing pool, as well as entire rooms devoted to mainframe computers, are long gone and it seems that rows and rows of cubicles are also going the way of the dinosaurs.
Today’s up-to-date environments tend to have smaller workspaces because most of the work materials people need come electronically and don’t need to be filed in massive drawers. In addition, meetings – even smaller ones – take place in dedicated spaces so visitor chairs at each workspace are not necessary.
In order to stay competitive in this fast-paced, quickly-evolving business environment, Hamilton Partners is currently updating the offices they lease in their nine buildings in the 308-acre Hamilton Lakes complex. Updates on the lobby and common areas have recently been completed in the 1200 Arlington Heights Road building and work is currently in progress in several other buildings. Two spec office spaces were completed and were quickly leased.
“We attract business of all descriptions – manufacturing, insurance, financial services, service companies – and they come from all over the map. In fact, we currently have over 150 tenants across the complex,” said Mark Hamilton, a managing partner at Hamilton Partners.
In the suburban office market, amenities and location are the name of the game now when it comes to leasing,” he said. “Thirty years ago, we figured that tenant spaces needed to devote at least 250 to 320 square feet per employee or about three to four people per 1,000 square feet. Today, four to six people per 1,000 square feet is more the norm because tenants want the landlord to provide common areas in the building like meeting rooms and Wi-Fi lounges that tenants can share.”
Competition with Chicago is fierce as millennials often prefer to work in the city because that is where they increasingly reside. So in order to gain those tenants, suburban complexes like Hamilton Lakes need to provide enticing amenities to retain a competitive advantage, Hamilton noted. “Those seeking office space generally have a checklist of amenities they would like access to: public transportation, food service in the building, shared conference rooms, shared Wi-Fi spaces and even workout facilities,” Hamilton said. “We are activitely workin to make sure that they can check the boxes on those items when they tour our facilities.”
For instance, “DASH on Demand” electric vehicles, owned by Innova EV and driven by Innova employees, operate from the Itasca Metra station. They transport commuters between the train station and their particular employer. The service is seen as a “last minute commute” so that those coming into Itasca on the train to work no longer have to walk or ride a bike to their employer.
In addition, those commuting in a personal vehicle can enjoy a direct ramp from I-390 into and out of the Hamilton Lakes complex, an amenity that is unique, Hamilton noted.
Once on site, employees have access to food service at man of the Hamilton Lakes buildings – either delis or machines or a hybrid mix of both. There are also two stand-alone restaurants in the park – a Buona Beef and mexican restaurant – as well as two restaurants within the Westin Hotel at the east end of the park.
Other on-site amenities include walking trails, a bank, a day care facility, a new luxury apartment complex on the east end and two hotels. Hamilton said 35 acres still remain to be developed and they are open to further ideas for amenities that can be added like a thrid hotel and more stand-alone restaurants. It can also be argued that Hamilton Lakes’ location itself is an economic amenity because it is located inside DuPage County line, which means significantly lower property taxes than just north in Cook County.
“At Hamilton Lakes, we strive to remain in the top tier of office parks by continuously reinvesting resources into our park,” Hamilton said.