2013 School Actions Building Repurposing and Sale Process 

Please note: this site will be updated with additional information as the repurposing process continues.

CPS' broker contacts:
CBRE, Inc.
Mike Nardini (312) 935-1030 / Mitch Adams (312) 935-1469
Visit the CBRE's website.

Ware Realty Group, LLC
Sarah Ware (312) 376-1448 Ext 10

Exhibit A - CPS Surplus Properties for Sale
Exhibit B - CPS 2013 Closed Schools for Sale

Overview of Advisory Committee Recommendations

On May 22, 2013, the Chicago Board of Education voted to close 50 of the system’s underutilized public schools.  Many of the shuttered facilities, spread across 21 city wards, can continue to be assets in their neighborhoods and for the city as a whole. To ensure decisions around these sites are made in the best interests of their local communities, Mayor Rahm Emanuel, on Aug. 23, 2013, created the Advisory Committee for School Repurposing and Community Development. This Committee, a group of independent civic leaders, was tasked with recommending a framework and implementation plan for repurposing the sites of the properties.

The Advisory Committee reviewed recommendations from various existing community planning efforts, including Community Action Councils’ plans and LISC Chicago’s quality-of-life plans, as well as citywide plans like Sustainable Chicago 2015, Chicago Neighborhoods Now, the City’s Five-Year Housing Plan, and the Chicago Housing Authority’s Plan Forward.  The City of Chicago and various sister agencies, such as the Chicago Park District, were asked to review the property and identify potential repurposing opportunities.

The resulting Report prepared by the Advisory Committee established a three-phase repurposing and development process:

  1. Phase One: Immediate Reuse – The first stage of the process is intended to identify and quickly put to use buildings that may help meet the programmatic needs of the City of Chicago or other governmental agencies.
  2. Phase Two: Competitive Redeployment – The second stage will mark the first public offering of the properties not identified for immediate reuse. Communities will be engaged to solicit input through their respective Alderman, who will convey that input to CPS and will direct CPS to put the property up for sale. The properties will be advertised for sale through a statutorily-regulated public bid process. Both the bid (purchase price) and reuse proposal will be considered for each property. The properties will be sold as-is, where-is and CPS will not provide any mortgage or financing.
  3. Phase Three: Development through a Revitalization Partner – The third stage is designed to allow CPS to engage a Revitalization Partner whose core business is real estate planning and community development to assist in the repurposing of the remaining properties where a community or financial benefit is not readily available or apparent.  The Revitalization Partner will implement a similar community input process as described in the Phase Two: Competitive Redeployment stage.

Download the Committee Report

CPS Real Estate Disposition Process


Updated January 2015

Completed or Ongoing

Creation of public website with property data Completed

Identifying properties for immediate reuse Completed

Engaging Aldermen throughout the city regarding community input Completed

Preparing Request for Proposals ("RFP") to retain real estate broker(s) Completed

Preparing bid solicitation for public advertisement of properties - Ongoing


April 2014 – August 2014

Retain real estate broker(s) through public RFP process Completed

Host property walk-throughs with broker(s) - Ongoing


August 2014 – Present

Publicly advertise bid solicitation for properties - Ongoing

Advisory Review and Evaluation Committee assessment of proposals - Ongoing

CPS Board to approve conveyances/re-advertise bid solicitation as needed - Ongoing

Convey those properties approved by the Board - Ongoing

Buildings to be Repurposed

Details on the buildings to be repurposed are listed below. Please note that pursuant to the Advisory Committee's Report, buildings are currently being evaluated for immediate reuse by the City or other governmental agencies. Some buildings have been withdrawn from the repurposing process and identified for immediate reuse.

Those buildings that have been withdrawn from the repurposing process and identified for immediate reuse are:

  • Canter – This building is being considered for immediate reuse by CPS.
  • Lafayette – This building is being considered for immediate reuse by CPS.
  • Owens – The new Owens Elementary (formerly Gompers) will continue to operate in this building, located at 12450 S State St (as well as within a second building, located at 12302 S State St).
  • Dodge – This building has been repurposed as CPS administrative space.

The list above will be updated as additional buildings are identified for immediate reuse.


CPS reserves the right to amend or correct property information, including PINs and legal descriptions. Ward information is provided for both current and 2015 boundaries.

[1] - This school was phased out and closed in June 2015.

[2] - This building has been repurposed by CPS for school use.

[3] - This building has been repurposed as CPS administrative space.

[4] - This building has completed the sale process and is no longer available.

Community Meetings

CPS is supporting the Aldermen of the affected wards to coordinate community meetings where repurposing ideas for the buildings can be discussed in an open, public forum.

View the Meeting Schedule

Potential Uses of Buildings

School buildings often occupy a prime location in their communities, with ample frontage and a commanding physical presence. Given those characteristics, many closed buildings have already garnered interest for various types of repurposing.

While final decisions will not be made outside of the formal process, interested parties have already drafted informal proposals for a number of properties. All proposals will be reviewed, but only formal proposals that meet the requirements of the CPS bid solicitation will be considered for ownership of the property.

Commercial use, mixed use and community use are all potential types of use. All proposals must be adequately financed and sustainable. All properties are sold "as is, where is" and will be conveyed to new owners.

Guiding Principles

The Advisory Committee crafted a set of principles to guide the repurposing process.

Primary Priorities

  • Assess facilities by their ability to advance existing community, citywide, and City/sister-agency plans
  • Prioritize reuse strategies for purposes that will make the most efficient use of the current facility configurations
  • Create the most efficient, flexible, and streamlined process for facility disposition
  • Assure future uses are financially viable

Submit an Idea

Contact Us

If you have any recommendations to improve this site, or if you have additional questions about the repurposing process, please feel free to contact us.

Page Last Modified on Tuesday, July 24, 2018