At a total cost of $190 million, Sherman Plaza is the most expensive downtown development project in Evanston’s history and the tallest building located between Milwaukee and Chicago. Sherman Plaza features a 25-story condominium tower totaling 253 unit along with 153,000 square feet of retail and medical office space. The development also includes a 12-story, 1,585-space public parking garage partial funded with tax increment financing ("TIF").
Michael Sieman structured institutional equity financing allowing for subsequent debt financing for this mixed-use development located in downtown Evanston – the home of Northwestern University in suburban Chicago.
The equity was structured in the form of a pre-buy commitment from an investment grade credit entity for the retail portion of Sherman Plaza. This not only allowed a reduction in the sponsorship equity and recourse but at the same time also allowed the construction lender to commit and fund prior to the project achieving typical pre-leasing milestones.
Participation in the upside profits with the equity investor was maintained by structuring the pre-buy as a stand-by commitment. What was essentially a put option for sponsorship mitigated the downside risk while allowing a remarketing effort for the collateral at completion.