United Airlines moves to Willis Tower

United Continental Holdings' corporate headquarters will be moving to the Willis Tower in downtown Chicago according to a joint announcement from commercial real estate firm U.S. Equities Realty and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, The Wall Street Journal reported. Residential real estate in Chicago can expect to see a boost as the airline makes the move and more employees look to make the move along with it.

The airline will have more than 4,000 employees working out of the downtown Chicago location. The WSJ revealed that United's network operations center is already occupying a portion of the Willis Tower and the move will result in United occupying roughly 25 percent of the building. The news source also revealed that the company's lease has been extended through 2028.

The deal could have many employees looking at homes for sale in Chicago in order to reduce their commute time to the new office. Willis Tower, formerly known as the Sears Tower, is located on Wacker Drive in the West Loop area of the city. As the Loop is the city's thriving business district, many Chicago workers look to the surrounding neighborhoods for their residential needs, such as the West Loop or River North areas.