After one last going-over with a fine-toothed comb, the Elburn village board approved the Elburn Station annexation agreement, paving the way for a development that could double the town's population.
All trustees, and Village President Dave Anderson, voted in favor.
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The village has been discussing the plan, in several forms, for more than five years.
The item was tabled in the fall, but earlier this year trustees and Anderson began talking about what compromises they could live with to approve the plan. Shodeen Inc. agreed to cut the number of rental apartments from 800 to 400, and to a requirement that single-family houses be built before apartments.
They also worked out how to pay for a pedestrian bridge over the Union Pacific railroad tracks, with the developer picking up at least $450,000 of the yet-unknown cost.
"I can't wait to get this off the agenda," said Trustee William Grabarek. "I'm so tired of hearing ..."
"Your own voice?" quipped Anderson, a reference to the more than 30 minutes the board spent discussing what Grabarek called "nits" he raised about wording, calculation of impact fees on housing built over stores, and confirmation of details about a special service area, among other things.
According to Anderson and village attorney Bob Britz, Shodeen Inc. agrees with the pact. But it is not in effect until Shodeen authorities sign it.
"It's not over, not by any sight, but we are moving in the right direction," Anderson said. He expects it might take at least 20 years to finish, and that changes will be requested along the way.
The development is authorized for up to 2,215 residential units. It will straddle the railroad tracks and an extension of Anderson Road.
Approval of the agreement clears the way for Shodeen Inc. to sell the right of way for the Anderson Road extension, and for Kane County to proceed with building it.
The county has a hearing before the Illinois Commerce Commission in May; if it gets all necessary permissions from the state, Metra and the UP, dirt could be moved this fall and construction started in spring 2014.