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Downers Grove Council discusses gas station site, Clyde Country Estates subdivision

DOWNERS GROVE – The Downers Grove Village Council on Tuesday night listened to discussion on three items presented, including a redevelopment proposal at the former Marathon gas station site at Saratoga and Ogden avenues, a special use permit request for a research and development facility on Wisconsin Avenue and an update on the Clyde Country Estates subdivision improvements.

Here are the highlights:

1. Redevelopment of former gas station site

At the meeting, commissioners heard the first reading of the redevelopment agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Vequity LLC concerning the property at 1201 Ogden Ave.

The developer proposes to develop a 5,900-square-foot commercial building. Since the site is a former gas station, the developer will need to remediate the environmental conditions. As part of the proposal agreement, the village will reimburse the developer $225,000 through the use of TIF money for costs associated with the cleanup.

“Vequity is actively marketing the site," said Michael Cassa, president of Downers Grove Economic Development Corporation. "Several national and regional tenants have expressed strong interest in the lease space. The redevelopment of the property, especially since it is located at a signalized intersection, is very important to the economic vitality of the Ogden Avenue corridor. The redevelopment of a closed gas station site will not only have a positive impact on that portion of Ogden Avenue, it will also make it easier for us to pursue other redevelopment projects in that corridor."

The village Fiscal 2015 budget includes $1.5 million in the Ogden Avenue TIF Fund for redevelopment projects, according to village documents.

"I am pleased to see that we are using TIF funds, I think, in a very appropriate manner for economic development," Commissioner David Olsen said. "Taking a site that is currently producing no sales tax revenue, and moving it to something that will be producing revenue and will be an asset to the community."

2. Business expanding?

Commissioners also heard the first reading for a special use permit for a research and development business to expand to include personal vehicle and maintenance services at 2300 Wisconsin Ave.

“The petitioner is a research and development business for non-street legal vehicles, developing suspension parts primarily for race vehicles,” said Stan Popovich, village planning manager. “The petitioner is currently more into research and development at the site which is permitted in the M1 district, what he is proposing to do is offer installation, fabrication and maintenance of suspension parts and installation on cars.”

The installation of suspension parts on race cars is classified as personal and vehicle maintenance and requires a special use permit.

There are no plans to modify the structure of the building, but the additional use of 10 off street parking spaces would be required.

3. Clyde Country Estates subdivision

Proposed improvements for the Clyde Country Estates subdivision includes reconstructing streets, improve drainage, construct sidewalks on one side of all streets. The estimated cost is $2.6 million.

Street reconstruction would take the bulk of the funding at $1.8 million to fix the alligator cracking and edge line deterioration.

“These reconstructions are being done because the streets are past the point of being milled and overlayed," said Nan Newlon, public works director. "They need to be reconstructed."

The alligator cracking of the streets indicates the structural component of the street is no longer functioning to support the street, and there is edge line deterioration along the streets, she added. The poor drainage in the neighborhood also contributes to some of that edge line deterioration of the streets, Newlon said.

Drainage improvement plans include new storm sewers, reshaping ditches and storm water management to help water drain away from problem areas.

To slow down traffic in the subdivision, there is a proposed realignment of the Clyde/Washington/60th Street intersection and a proposed traffic circle at Webster/Washington/60th intersection.

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