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Special Meeting Monday on Groves at Corporate Reserve

St. Charles Planning and Development Committee to meet Monday, Nov. 5, after the City Council’s Government Operations Committee meeting.

The Groves at Corporate Reserve will be the subject of a special meeting of the St. Charles Planning and Development Committee on Monday, Nov. 5, immediately after the City Council’s Government Operations Committee meeting, the city announced in a release Tuesday afternoon.

The Groves at Corporate Reserve originally was planned for discussion at the regular Planning and Development Committee meeting on Nov. 12.

The project was first proposed as multiple office buildings and parking garages on 17 acres of a 50-acre site north of West Main Street at Cardinal Drive, which is west o Randall Road. Corporate Reserves purchased the site in 2008 and proceeded with the first phase of the development, which stalled as the Great Recession locked its grip on the nation.

The area is zoned office research space, but Schaumburg-based JCF Real Estate proposed last fall a dramatic revision of the project, with new plans for a $40 million luxury apartments complex featuring between 300 and 400 units in three- and four-story buildings on 17 acres of the property. The developers had hoped to break ground in April.

But the plan quickly ran into opposition. St. Charles Patch reported in November that residents and some aldermen were critical of the project’s density — that there were too many units packed too closely together in the area. The developers had revised the plan at this point to include 407 units in the project.

Then, in July, St. Charles Patch reported the developer had scaled back the project to 331 units and made other concessions, but the changes failed to meet the city’s affordable housing requirements, offering instead to make a $50,000 contribution to the city’s Housing Trust Fund; but under the city’s ordinance, eliminating affordable housing from the project would have obligated the developer to pay $2.6 million, city officials said at that time.

Since then, talk of the project has slowed, although residents’ interest and concerns about it remains high.

Information about Monday’s meeting will be posted on the city’s website on Friday, Nov. 2, according to the city’s release.

For more information, contact Matthew O’Rourke, Community Development Department, at 630-377-4443.

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Ted Schnell November 01, 2012 at 08:25 PM
I was not referring to the philosophy of building more homes to attract developers -- no matter what planning/development philosophy you follow, there has to be a balance. In that regard, by the way, every theory has flaws. As I see it, the trick is understanding which best fits the community based on a list of criteria that is too long to discuss here. The other thing to consider is that implementation and assessment of any plan takes decades. Decisions made 20-30 years ago are still having ramifications today -- not just in St. Charles, but in any city or town you pcik (unless, of course, they've only been established in the last 15 years or so. :)
josephine s. November 02, 2012 at 02:14 AM
In 2008, St Charles hired Lynn Montei Assoc. to draft an aspirational "2014" Strategic Plan, on a shorter timetable of 3-10 yrs to function differently from the Comp Plan, which they framed as a "reactive" document, at that time. That's what those are for-vision and forward-thinking. Did not say that YOU were referring to "more rooftops", Ted . You missed my point. Exactly what you said-balance between development that serves the community, does not foresake it, and opportunities for new revenue streams-- is not accomplised by building more residential, or rezoning land residential at this time, and with these current conditions in St Charles. I also did'nt mean to imply that St Charles is alone in our current condition. (Altho I did say that Geneva & Batavia have indeed reaped rewards of our short-sightedness)Decisions made 15-20-30 years ago natureally don't stand up to market trends and economic conditions & that's why "smart " redevelopment strategies are needed. I DID imply that in St Charles, "more rooftops" is a mantra among some past & present leadership and current staff..... and let us not forget to press our candidates for their position. At least one mayoral candidate may well be the loudest cheerleader for residential density that we have ever seen!
josephine s. November 02, 2012 at 02:15 AM
Ted, you are doing a yeoman's job, covering our St Charles issues.:)
Ted Schnell November 02, 2012 at 04:56 AM
Thanks, Josephine -- and thanks for clarifying your point. At one time the written word was considered the perfect form of communication. That has changed significantly over the past 100 years. Today, we're a culture of talkers and listeners and find it more difficult to read the nuances and tone intended in another's writing. I enjoy forums like this immensely, but as I just demonstrated, in this day and age, it's all too easy to misread a comment.
Henry James November 02, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Ted I get where your coming from and in most cases I completely agree that this is how the process works and how it should work, but the problem with this one is the West Side of St. Charles has basically been under attack with high density developments, the residents don't want them, they would be okay with development with lower density, the Council is not being informed of all the information just as it was a shock to them that it was being announced in a meeting the other night that Lexington was being brought to the P&D meeting on the 12th, yet the Council was not told this, and The Mayor is pushing for a positive vote for Corporate Reserves. Why when the City needs economic development is the Mayor pushing for apartments on a great piece of office property. On another note I think you and Patch do a great job of getting the local news out and giving the people a chance to get information out that normally could not be shared easily. Thank you.

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