"This is what the community wants," Mayor Pat Kitching said after the park board meeting.
"This will light the fire for more development on Cicero Avenue."
In recent weeks, the park district's decision on the site was the center of debate.Kitching
had contended that without the 2.5 acres, the entire 25-acre development would be jeopardized.He
said there are letters of intent from such major retailers as Home Depot
, LA Fitness and Petco
to locate stores in the shopping center. Kitching
said the developers can now apply for building permits and seek approval from the village's planning and zoning commission and the village board.The developers hope to break ground by March, he
Some critics have complained that village and park district officials are giving away the land at much less than its market value, citing nearby vacant property, zoned for residential use, that sold for as much as $265,000. Kitching
said the village researched the cost of filling in the pond to make the land ready to develop for residential use.
"We found that it would cost $480,000 just to make that land usable," he