Village Delays Decision on Downtown Developer
Lake Zurich trustees want more information before committing to developer for parcel across from The Promenade.
Lake Zurich village trustees agreed to delay committing to a developer of a village-owned, lakefront parcel on Old Rand Road, Monday night.
Village board members also agreed, after Village President Suzanne Branding asked them to share their wish list for downtown, that they want a mixed-use development on the Block A site, which overlooks The Promenade and the lake.
“I also feel strongly that the first floor needs to be a gathering point, a destination . . . when I look strictly at all apartments or all residential, I’m not too much in favor,” said Trustee Terry Mastandrea. He said he’d like to see coffee shops and cafes on the ground floor, a place for residents to enjoy the lakefront.
John Breugelmans of ARDE told the board that their wish list describes what he is proposing. Breugelman is proposing a five-story contemporary mixed-use building, with a lot of glass facing the lake. The building would include 50 units and 60 percent would be two bedrooms at 1,200 square feet. There would be a raised plaza overlooking the lake as well as a restaurant, coffee shop and ice cream shop. He told the board he already has retailers interested in the location.
Other developers include J. Moises Cuikerman who is proposing luxury apartments, Richard Sova of Landover proposing apartment-condos, and David Smith of Southshore Real Estate who proposes commercial for the Block A area, but wants to start developing an area along Robertson Road first.
Trustees Jonathan Sprawka and Rich Sustich said they favored Breugelman’s proposal. Mastandrea took issue with the height of the proposal, which is five stories, plus a penthouse.
Trustees Tom Poynton and Sustich spoke in favor of opening downtown development to a larger group of developers and marketing downtown development in publications such as Crains Chicago Business.
“I’d like to see us take the time and, if we have to, spend money to get an outside consultant and market Lake Zurich to people with better ideas,” Poynton said.
However, Mastandrea and Sprawka felt it was time to move forward on downtown development.
“I don’t want to lose what we have. We have four people who want to build in Lake Zurich. Let’s take a good luck at what is offered and what we can negotiate with them,” Mastandrea said
Developers were critical of suggestions to look beyond the current proposals for downtown development.
“We all spent a lot of time and money on these drawings and site plans. To me it is a little disingenuous for the board to say “thank you” but we want to go to broader public. Something doesn’t ring true to me,” Richard Sova said.
In the interest of getting the project moving, board members agreed to choose from among this group of developers for Block A, and to consider marketing development of the rest of downtown.
Trustees also agreed they were open to there being more than one developer in the downtown district.
Village Admininstrator Jason Slowinski suggested trustees draft specific questions for the developers. The board expects to consider the proposals at its next meeting on Aug. 20.