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updated: 9/17/2012 8:56 PM

Palatine Mariano's adding parking to meet high demand

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The ongoing demand for parking by both patrons and employees of Mariano's Fresh Market in Palatine soon will be alleviated, at least a bit.

The village council Monday approved a plan that will allow the popular grocery store at 545 N. Hicks Road to reconfigure an outlot originally slated to house a small commercial building.

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"I've been very pleased with how accommodating and responsive Mariano's has been," said Councilman Greg Solberg, whose district includes the store.

Mariano's was supposed to relinquish its use of the lot a year after opening if a business was interested in opening there, but the wave of shoppers has not thinned. As a result, the store reached an agreement with property owner Bradford Real Estate to permanently use the lot for parking.

The reconfiguration will result in the removal of an existing building pad blocking off part of the site and an additional 10 parking spaces.

Behind the store to the east, Mariano's last month added 10 parallel spaces dedicated to employee parking. The addition was only temporary since the lane was meant only for emergency vehicles, but officials haven't seen a negative impact and are allowing the spots to become permanent.

Though the new employee parking runs along their backyards, a few neighbors who attended the meeting said they supported the move because it has cut down on the number of trucks using the rear alleyway.

To address any other concerns and discuss the possibility of implementing dedicated delivery hours, Solberg and Mariano's representatives will hold a meeting open to the public at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 25, at police headquarters, located just north of the grocery store.

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