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Downers Grove Council approves incentives package for new Art Van Furniture store

Published: Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013 5:06 p.m. CST

DOWNERS GROVE – The Downers Grove Village Council approved Tuesday the incentives package aimed to help Art Van Furniture open a new store in the vacant Home Depot Expo building on Butterfield Road.

The deal with Art Van will rebate 50 percent of future local sales taxes from the store.

The Michigan-based furniture retailer will fund the up-front cost of $3.2 million to buy the building and convert it into an Art Van store.

The sales tax rebate will last 15 years, or until it totals $3.2 million, whichever comes first. If the store closes before 20 years, the village would have the ability to recoup some of the rebate. Art Van expects the store to generate about $150,000 annually in net sales tax revenue for the village.

"This project will serve as a catalyst not only for other development opportunities on Butterfield, but for the attraction of other quality retailers and restaurants," Downers Grove Economic Development Corporation Director Michael Cassa said when the plan was first read at the Nov. 5 council meeting.

Cassa said the 100,000-square-foot building at 1021 Butterfield Road has been especially hard to fill because much of the retail sales area is on its second floor. It's sat vacant since 2009.

Cassa previously said the incentive agreement allows Art Van to absorb the costs of the renovation, costs which would not be required at other sites that are available in other communities.

Art Van currently has 36 stores. Its expansion into Downers Grove is part of a larger move in the Chicago area, where it plans to open 18 new stores.

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