Knickpoint Ventures is developing a 21-acre film studio on Chicago’s Northwest Side.

The firm founded by Zain Koita just topped out The Fields Studios — a roughly $200 million venture capital investment as part of the redevelopment of the former Marshall Field warehouse campus at 4000 West Diversey Avenue, Chicago Tribune report Report.

Knickpoint acquired a stake in the site in 2018 when it safe A $50 million loan from TH Commercial Mortgage was used to advance the project. It is planned for nine sound stages, as well as creative and production offices, totaling approximately 500,000 square feet. The developer expects to complete construction early next year.

Illinois tax breaks and subsidies have helped revive Chicago’s film and television industry in recent years, according to Gov. JB Pritzker. Film production spending in Illinois will reach nearly $700 million in 2022, breaking the previous record of $560 million set in 2019 and creating more than 15,000 jobs.

“It has been the economic driver of the neighborhood, except for the past 10 years, and our goal is to bring it back to that,” Koita told the media. “The film industry is often united from the top down, and that’s great for Chicago.”

Chicago hits include “The Great Fire of Chicago,” “Chicago Police Department,” “Chicago Medical Corps” and “Bear Market.” Existing studios like Cinespace Chicago Film Studios in the North Lawndale neighborhood have struggled to keep up with demand, prompting companies like Knickpoint to expand the city’s stock of video production space.

As well as redeveloping parts of the Marshall Field warehouse, Knickpoint also designed the soundstage from the ground up. One will total 36,000 square feet, which will be the largest in the state.

The 1.5-million-square-foot complex already houses a Cermak Fresh Market grocery store and 123 apartment units, offering studio employees the opportunity to live on-site.

— Quinn Donoghue

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