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updated: 9/11/2012 11:51 PM

Rolling Meadows site will see grocery store again, developer says

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Peter Eisenberg, a principal in the firm that obtained the Rolling Meadows shopping center that once housed a Dominick's, expressed confidence Tuesday night that a grocery store will again anchor the site.

The city council agreed without comment to reimburse Clark Street Development of Chicago for some expenses with tax increment financing funds. The company obtained title to the property at Kirchoff Road and Meadow Drive in July, and according to the documents approved Tuesday, redevelopment is expected to cost about $4.5 million.

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The city expects to give Clark Street about $700,000, said Valerie Dehner, community development director. A staff report said the city earmarked the money for TIF-eligible expenses such as land acquisition, environmental remediation, demolition and site preparation, and marketing.

Eisenberg introduced himself at the council meeting and told of some of his company's suburban retail success stories, including projects in Skokie and North Riverside.

"Last December we bought the note on the (Rolling Meadows) property, and in July we finally finished foreclosure," he said. The 11-acre site has 132,000 square feet of retail space.

Mayor Tom Rooney expressed pleasure that the site the city has struggled with since Dominick's left about eight years ago has a new owner and manager.

"Our two biggest obstacles were the former owner and the former management company," he said. "I am thrilled you have replaced them both."

The approximately $700,000, part of the city's TIF I, must be spent before Dec. 31. The 1988 TIF has expired, but taxes collected this year are still eligible to be spent on the project. Any extra funds will go to local taxing bodies.

Eisenberg said after leaving the meeting that the development schedule will depend on signing an anchor tenant. The city's development agreement calls for occupancy by December 2015.

"We are talking with three grocery stores," said Eisenberg. "They are early discussions, but we have interest from three grocery stores." A Jewel-Osco is not far away on the other side of Kirchoff.

Fritz Duda, another partner in the firm, had said earlier that part of the site might be residential. He also said the building might be demolished.

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