ROMEOVILLE – The village board Wednesday was impressed with its first look at the development for commercial businesses moving into the Uptown Square area.
The site plan calls for Fat Ricky’s Old World Pizza and Franconi’s grocery and deli to share the northeast space of the downtown lot.
“It’s an absolutely gorgeous building,” Mayor John Noak said.
The development would be 10,582 square feet. The two businesses will have separate customer entrances but have a shared access within the building.
Fat Ricky’s will include a kitchen, private dining area, space for 40 tables, outdoor dining area and a drive-thru.
The L-shaped building would take up 10,582 square feet, with 6,438 for Fat Ricky’s and 4,144 for Franconi’s. Franconi’s would be placed north of Fat Ricky’s.
The development also would include a total of 44 parking spaces. However, customers would be able to park with the shared spaces of the Romeoville Athletic and Events Center.
Construction on the building will start this summer, according to Village Manager Steve Gulden.
“Planning and Zoning Commission did a fine job,” Trustee Dave Richards said. “This is a unique site.”
One concern the commission had, according to Richards, was the safety issues with coming out of the drive-thru right next to Franconi’s.
“[Cars] would almost be dumping into the grocery store entrance,” Richards said.
Deliveries also were a concern because the drop-off location for food could interfere with drive-thru traffic.
Representatives for the developer, BG Investments, LLC., said delivery schedules would be set so multiple vehicles don’t pile up near the drop-off, and signage could be added to make sure the drive-thru exit is safe.
Trustee Sue Micklevitz, the board liaison with the Downtown Redevelopment Committee, said committee members also had similar concerns.
“But other than that, people are very excited,” Micklevitz said.
Honoring fire assistant
Fire Chief Kent Adams retired fire department badge number 90 at Wednesday’s meeting in honor of the late Diane Michalec, who recently died battling cancer.
Michalec was the executive assistant for the fire department for 24 years.
According to Adams, the department retires badge numbers when a firefighter serves more than 20 years or is killed while performing firefighting duties.
“The individual we’re recognizing tonight is not a firefighter,” Adams said, explaining how Michalec still showed the qualities the department looks for in a firefighter. “Diane should be recognized for her dedication and body of work.”
Michalec’s husband, Battalion Chief Robert Michalec, received the recognition on her behalf.
“She loved working for the village,” Robert Michalec said. “Every day there is some nuance at work or at home that always reminds us of her.”