Advocate Health Care moving headquarters

Taking advantage of the weak suburban office market, Advocate Health Care is moving its headquarters to Downers Grove, Ill.,from Oak Brook, Ill., this spring, the state's largest health system confirmed on Friday.

Advocate will move about 600 employees to Highland Landmark I, a seven-story structure at 3075 Highland Parkway. Advocate will lease 139,470 square feet or 3-1/2 floors, a spokeswoman says. The move will be completed by late this spring, Advocate said in a statement.

Advocate will move two office support centers to Downers Grove, from Oak Brook and Park Ridge. Its current campus, 2025 Windsor Drive, Oak Brook, then will be used as a centralized business office, which will combine all of Advocate's Chicago-area patient access/registration and patient accounting operations into one department, according to Advocate.

Advocate owns the Oak Brook location.

Oak Brook was chosen for the centralized office after a search of 50 potential sites across the state, Advocate's statement said. That space is less than its current combined square footage at the two sites.

“The new space allows us to bring the unique disciplines of more than 600 employees from our support center locations together in an integrated team environment,” Advocate President and CEO Jim Skogsbergh said in the statement.

Advocate, which brought in $4.44 billion in revenue in 2011, has 10 acute-care hospitals and two children's hospitals. It has been headquartered in Oak Brook since it was formed in 1995 after the merger of EHS Healthcare, which was based in the west suburban community, and Lutheran General Health System, which was headquartered in Park Ridge.

Downers Grove is home to Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital, which employs more than 2,600.

Highland Landmark I was bought in 2005 by New York-based Falcon Real Estate Investment Co. Ltd., on behalf of overseas investors. A broker for Los Angeles-based CBRE Inc. who handles leasing for the owners did not return calls.

The Advocate lease helps offset the loss of the building's largest tenant, Havi Group L.P., a logistics firm serving McDonald's Corp. restaurants. Havi moving to and office building at 3500 Lacey Road, Downers Grove, where it will fill some of the space vacated when Sara Lee Corp. spun off its meat business. Hillshire Brands Co. moved downtown to the West Loop in December.

(Crain's reporter Andrew Wang contributed to this story.)



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