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Daily Journal
     January 30, 2020      #35-30 KDJ
 
picture1
A western viewpoint of the six-story PNC Bank property along East Court Street in downtown Kankakee.

Daily Journal/File

2 d'town buildings sold 

By Lee Provost
lprovost@daily-journal.com


KANKAKEE — Two of downtown Kankakee’s most prominent office buildings — the PNC Bank building and Clock Tower Centre — have been sold for $1.43 million to two developers.

Kankakee businessman and developer Mike Pinski and Chicago real estate developer Doug Baum, recently took possession of the two properties. The properties had been owned by Manteno’s Buck Tamblyn.

The 6-story PNC building is located at 1 Dearborn Square. Clock Tower, which had been known as the Arcade building for generations, is located at 187 S. Schuyler Ave.

These properties are crucial to any development concepts the city has for its downtown district.

Tamblyn had owned the 55,000-square-foot Clock Tower property since October 2008 and the PNC building since September 2005.

Both properties are experiencing difficulties in attracting tenants. PNC is about 55 percent occupied, and Clock Tower is about 40 percent occupied.

Pinski is the owner of the office complex in the 200 block of North Schuyler Avenue, directly across the street from the Paramount Theatre. He also owns the former PNC Bank property located at the corner of Illinois 50 and North Street in Bradley, among other properties.

In a twist of circumstances, Pinski had owned the downtown PNC Bank building previously, from 1999 until he sold it in 2005 to Tamblyn.

The 52-year-old Baum, however, is a new name in the Kankakee region. He and Pinski have known one another for more than 30 years as they attended the University of Illinois together and were members of the same fraternity.

Baum is a 1990 U of I grad where he earned a business/finance degree.

Baum said he and Pinski are currently developing their plans for the two buildings. He noted that he had previously looked at some other Kankakee area properties.

“This is my first deep dive into Kankakee,” he said.

So how did Baum get involved with this transaction? Pinski sought his advice on the properties.

During the tour, Baum informed Pinski he was impressed with the properties. Pinski asked his friend if he had interest in partnering on these properties. He did.

“With this project, a new developer is coming into our community,” Pinski noted. “He wants to help make a difference and reinvigorate our downtown.”

Kankakee Mayor Chasity Wells-Armstrong is also eager to see what the new owners envision.

“I look forward to partnering with this new team that will help the city of Kankakee implement the type of development needed to enhance the growth that is already occurring downtown,” she said.

Brad Kuntz, Kankakee Development Corp. president, the organization which oversees much of downtown Kankakee, is pleased to see a new investor in downtown.

He expressed confidence Pinski and Baum can return the buildings to profitability. There has been talk of bringing residential use to the PNC building, but final plans are still being mulled.

“Having an outside developer is good,” Kuntz said. “He is obviously doing this to make money, not out of the goodness of his heart. This should tell people there is opportunity here.”

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A western viewpoint of the six-story PNC Bank property along East Court Street in downtown Kankakee.

Daily Journal/File
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Lee Provost
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