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MUNDELEIN, IL-Village officials in this far north suburb have approved rezoning of a single-family home at 650 S. Butterfield Rd. for a 6,600-sf, four-store retail center. While they have not seen a formal development proposal for the project, village officials have bigger things on the drawing board in the Southside Commercial Corridor.

First, the Krispy Kreme donut chain has announced it will build on an outlot in the Oak Creek Plaza shopping center on Townline Road, which is anchored by a Menard’s, says community development director Daniel Ungerleider. That should be “a good magnet for a lot of retail uses,” Ungerleider believes. Other outlots are available, and Chicago-based MJ Partners advertises 160,000 sf of retail space is available at Oak Creek Plaza.

However, several large areas in the southern portion of the village have been earmarked for major redevelopment or development following a 10-month study by Camiros Ltd., which found several cases of underutilized property in an area bisected by three major arterials–Lake Street (US Route 45), Townline Road (Illinois Route 60), and Diamond Lake Road–that form the crossroads of central Lake County. Recommendations included developing mixed-use commercial infill, increasing multifamily condominium options, developing additional industrial sites and improving infrastructure, particularly roads, to make that development happen. Public investment was estimated at $10.1 million.

Specifically, Camiros is recommending a 270,000-sf office and retail, 100-unit residential and 2,500-sf Metra commuter rail station at EJ&E tracks to create a mixed-use transit-oriented development northwest of the intersection of Townline Road and Lake Street. That vision hinges, however, on Metra eventually providing commuter rail service from Waukegan to Aurora, two cities 40 miles north and west of Chicago, creating a rail line that serves the outer ring of the region.

Camiros also recommends an upscale Oak Creek townhomes development south of the shopping center to increase the multifamily options available to residents.

In addition, the study recommends providing access to undeveloped industrial property north of Townline Road, possibly adding 300,000 sf of space to the existing industrial park. Further north, the planning firm advocates redeveloping the intersection of Diamond Lake Road and Lake Street, providing better access and view of Diamond Lake as well as adding commercial development.

Ungerleider says other areas of the village also are getting attention, pointing to redevelopment at three intersections in the village’s Downtown area. The Downtown plan will be redone this summer, he adds.

“We’re having discussions with just about everybody,” Ungerleider says. “The economy is good right now.”

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