Oakbrook, Ill.-based REIT Inland Real Estate Corp. and North-brook, Ill.-based Pine Tree Institutional Realty, LLC are forming a joint venture to develop shopping centers in the midwestern United States. Over the next four years, the partnership, Pine Tree-Inland Development I, LLC, will spend $100 million on ground-up opportunities annually. The first phase of the joint venture is being funded and managed by both companies.

Pine Tree will provide site selection, acquisition, development and leasing services and Inland offers advice on acquisition, leasing and tenant relationships. Over the last decade, Inland has worked with Pine Tree numerous times on investment opportunities, acquiring shopping centers in prime locations, which ranged in size from 75,000 square feet to 300,000 square feet.

The partners have already started work on projects in Fort Wayne, Ind., St. Joseph, Mo. and Indianapolis. Inland is pursuing ground-up and redevelopment opportunities due to a competitive acquisition environment in the retail sector. Last year, the company entered a joint venture with North American Real Estate, Inc. to acquire and develop approximately 31 acres of vacant land.