It’s all finally coming down.
Last week, the company that owns the old Brach’s candy factory in Austin announced that it will demolish the plant.
ML Realty Partners acquired the plant in 2008. The property had been listed for sale at that time for $10.5 million. However, documents on file with the Cook County Recorder of Deeds don’t indicate that the property was acquired through a direct sale.
The Itasca-based company plans to build its own industrial building on the land. The Brach’s site has been closed for a decade after the Chicago-based candy maker moved operations to Argentina.
At roughly 2-million square feet, the Brach’s site covers 32 acres and includes smaller buildings along with the seven-story factory. In 2007, an office building on the site was blown up for a scene in 2008’s The Dark Knight movie. In recent years, some in the community have called for the site to be used for a new high school campus in Austin.
ML Realty is planning a multi-million makeover of the site, including a new 500,000 square-foot building. The site, located at 401 N. Cicero Ave. just north of Lake Street, is expected to be open to other tenants as well. The city of Chicago is offering $10.6 million in tax increment financing to ML Realty to knock down the factory, provided the company meets specific targets, including hiring between 75 and 200 full-time workers there.
Demolition is expected to begin this fall and wrap up next spring.