Skip to main content

Economic Development

Creating Opportunities

Financial security is central to residents’ ability to sustain themselves and provide a stable environment for raising families. That is why our economic development initiatives include job creation. We prioritize hiring and training area residents for employment within the organization and its subsidiaries. Likewise, we partner with local and minority contractors who share our commitment to the community’s economic empowerment.


In addition to creating opportunities within the organization, we pursue economic development initiatives in the broader community. One of the most successful is Cermak Produce at El Mercado.


In addition, as part of Bickerdike’s community revitalization and economic development efforts, we’ve developed and managed over 90,000 square feet of commercial space, offering essential goods and services to the community, providing employment for over 100 area residents, and adding vitality to our local commercial districts.

Cermak Produce

El Mercado, a local fresh foods market developed by Bickerdike, has been an important source of jobs and community economic revitalization. Bickerdike developed the El Mercado at 2701 W. North Avenue in 1992 originally as a public marketplace.


Cermak Produce, a locally based independent grocer, has operated successfully since 1998 as our anchor business at the site. They operate a vibrant store where countless residents regularly shop.

La Estancia Commercial

Bickerdike completed the construction of La Estancia in 2007. La Estancia is a mixed-used project consisting of 57 affordable apartments and 14,000 square feet of commercial space in three buildings on Division Street.

The commercial tenants include:

The space has brought a new vibrancy to Division Street, where vacant lots once stood.

Zapata Commercial

Our Zapata Apartments development brought four new buildings and 61 affordable units to formerly vacant lots in Logan Square. Center for Changing Lives occupies the space located at the 1955 N. St. Louis Street building, which includes 4,000 square feet of commercial space.

Bickerdike Offices

Our 2550 W. North Avenue building houses Bickerdike’s corporate and property management offices.