It's official; the Golden Arches are moving to Chicago's Near West side. McDonald's, the world's largest burger chain, announced today, June 13, that it plans to move its headquarters from a sprawling campus in Oak Brook, Ill. to the West Loop, a site owned by developer Sterling Bay. The move will take place by the spring of 2018, the company reports. It says it will transform the space into a modern setting that fosters collaboration and connectivity.
McDonald's has resided in Oak Brook since 1971, but says the move to Chicago is part of its efforts to attract and retain more top talent, specifically younger workers who prefer living in the city. The move marks a return to Chicago where the company was headquartered from 1955 to 1971.
Rumors had been swirling for months about the company considering a move. "We are a brand on the move in more ways than one," states McDonald's CEO Steve Easterbrook. "Moving our headquarters to Chicago is another significant step in our journey to build a better McDonald's. This world-class environment will continue to drive business momentum by getting us even closer to customers, encouraging innovation and ensuring great talent is excited about where they work."
Rick Hernandez, chairman of the board of McDonald's says the company is looking forward to returning to the Chicago community where it started. "Today's announcement is about more than just a new location for us. It is an important investment in our people as we look to create a start-of-the-art company headquarters they can use to move our business forward for many years to come."
The new headquarters will also house Hamburger University, one of seven worldwide locations, providing a state-of-the-art learning center for the company's future leaders and employees.