United Airlines to Stay Put in Willis Tower After Search for New HQ

By Anna Breuer on 13 March 2019
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DSC_0295Following an 18-month search for a potential new headquarters location in Chicago, United Airlines said Wednesday it will remain in its current Willis Tower location.

United said that its decision to stay in the city’s tallest skyscraper follows landlord Blackstone Group’s promise to partner with the airline in transforming the current space.

“As one of the city’s largest private employers and its hometown airline, we are excited to deepen our roots here in Chicago while making the investments needed to reimagine the headquarters for our employees,” said United CEO Oscar Munoz.

The Chicago-based airline said it will revamp the 850,000 square feet (78,968 square meters) it occupies on 16 floors of what many still refer to as the Sears Tower. It also plans to add a 30,000-square-foot (2,787-square-meter) cafeteria and roof deck on the building’s fourth floor.

The Willis Tower is a 110-story, 1,450-foot (442-meter) skyscraper in Chicago that was the tallest building in the world when it opened in 1973. It remained the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere until the completion of One World Trade Center in New York in 2014.

United’s lease in the Willis Tower, which is undergoing a $500 million renovation and update of its own, will run through 2033.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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