Updated Oct. 23, 2013 – 3:10 p.m.
Costco, the warehouse retail giant, plans to open a new store in North Riverside by the beginning of October 2013, said Village Administrator Guy Belmonte on Oct. 19.
According to Belmonte, Costco has signed an agreement with the owners of the property, Monroe Investment Partners. Meanwhile, the owners have petitioned the village to approve rezoning the former Edward Don property at 26th Street and Harlem Avenue, to allow subdividing the property for outlots and to permit the submission of a planned unit development.
“This tells me Costco is going in there,” said Belmonte.
The North Riverside Zoning Board of Appeals will consider those petitions at a meeting scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 25 at 7 p.m. in the council room of North Riverside Village Commons, 2401 Desplaines Ave.
Belmonte said he has not seen the agreement signed by Monroe and Costco but said the village has asked for a copy of it. Monroe Investment Partners has submitted preliminary plans for the site to the village building department in advance of the Oct. 25 ZBA meeting.
Tom Brashler, a partner with Monroe Investment Partners, said he could not discuss details of the agreement with Costco, but confirmed that his company had filed for various approvals from the village.
At the Oct. 25 meeting, said Brashler, “we’ll include a lot more with the package [of plans] that the village already has.”
The site plan provided to the village indicates that the nearly 20-acre property would include Costco and four outlot retailers. The Costco warehouse would be located on the west side of the property. A 742-space parking lot would be located east and south of the warehouse, with a Costco gas station area in the northeast corner of the parking lot.
Four outlot areas, each about an acre in size, would run north to south along the Harlem Avenue frontage of the property.
Plans indicate that developers will seek to create an entry/exit area on Harlem Avenue that would benefit only vehicles heading southbound. On 26th Street, developers are looking to add another entry drive in addition to the one that already exists farther west.
The spur railroad line that separates the North Riverside Park Mall property and the property at 26th Street and Harlem Avenue would also be removed.
It’s unclear from the site plan how traffic might be able to move between the two properties.
Costco would purchase the land from Monroe, said Belmonte. Brashler would not comment on that particular detail.
Part of the plan to bring Costco to North Riverside would include some sort of financial incentives from the village. Belmonte said the village board has been meeting in closed session to talk about those incentives and would probably hold one more closed session before making a public statement about the details of those incentives.
Belmonte said the plan is for construction to begin next spring with a target opening date of Oct. 1, 2013. Once construction begins, said Belmonte, Costco can erect one of its warehouse stores in 120 days.
That’s also the same general target opening date for two new outlot restaurants, Red Lobster and LongHorn Steakhouse, at North Riverside Park Mall. Construction on those restaurants is also expected to begin next spring, said Belmonte.
“To have Costco with four additional outlots, if that happens, with Red Lobster and LongHorn, that corner [of the village] – from 22nd Street to 26th Street will have a whole new look,” said Belmonte.