Construction nears completion for the new film studios within the Marshall Field’s warehouse complex at 4000 W Diversey Avenue in Avondale. Located on the corner with N Pulaski Road on the southern edge of the neighborhood, the studios will complete the property’s redevelopment and expansion after being closed by Macy’s in 2008. Now developer Knickpoint Ventures has held a topping-off ceremony for the new Gensler-designed addition which will open as the city’s first purpose built studio.
Chicago’s film industry has seen continued growth with a record year in 2022 with Governor Pritzker extending the state’s film production tax credit for another 10 years, however the city’s existing facilities like Cinespace are at capacity and space for expansion is limited. The property dubbed the ‘Fields Studios’ will bring much needed relief with over 500,000 square feet of space, joining various other studios announced across the city like Regal Mile in South Shore.
Field Studios joins the first phase of the development’s 1.5 million square feet of space which included 123 residential units and a Cermak Fresh Market. Aiming to also attract and retain local talent, the project will create a true urban film complex by adding an additional 50,000 square feet of food and beverage retailers. This will be joined by 200,000 square feet of creative production space and 150,000 square feet of studio support and mill space.
There will also be 132,000 square feet of film space split into nine sound stages of which eight will be NC-30 rated ranging from 12,000 to 18,000 square feet and one being the state’s largest at 36,000 square feet. The ninth studio will be a smaller 5,000-square-foot stage for things like music videos or ads. Expected to open early next year at a total cost near $250 million, the facility is expected to help create 12,000 jobs and $1.3 billion in economic impact in its first five years.