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updated: 2/26/2014 4:42 PM

Mundelein ready to cut checks for Hawley Street land

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  • Traffic moves along Hawley Street in Mundelein in this file photo. Officials want to widen and repave the road.

       Traffic moves along Hawley Street in Mundelein in this file photo. Officials want to widen and repave the road.
    Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer, 2013


Mundelein officials are preparing to spend $202,400 for the land they need to widen a stretch of Hawley Street, village documents indicate.

Offers have been made to the owners of 36 properties, many of them residential. The average proposed payment is about $5,622, or $7.69 per square foot.

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"That's what we are offering and that's what most people are agreeing to," Assistant Village Administrator Mike Flynn said.

The village will buy some of the land outright. In some cases, owners will be paid to allow easements through their land. Some property owners fall into both categories.

The village board approved the final offers Monday. The offers were based on appraisals from Polach Appraisal Group, a Chicago-area firm.

The village's plans target a roughly one-mile stretch of Hawley Street, between Midlothian Road and Seymour Avenue. It's a busy stretch of road, one that includes Mundelein High School, Sandburg Middle School and a Dunkin' Donuts, among other local landmarks.

It's also in bad shape, filled with bumps and cracks that have worsened through the years.

A center-turn lane for automobiles and new storm and sanitary sewers are planned. The road will be resurfaced and a bike path will be added, too.

The project is expected to take two years and cost $8 million. Lake County maintains that stretch of Hawley and will pay for some of the work.

The plans won't require any homes to be demolished or for people to move, officials said.

The biggest offer approved so far, for $70,000, has been made to the owner of the land where Flowerama stands at 4 W. Hawley St. It would reimburse the owner for 2,390 square feet of land needed for the project.

The smallest offer, for $300, has been made to the owner of the land where Bank of America operates at 346 N. Seymour Ave. It would reimburse the owner for 12.5 square feet of land.

The average offer for land acquisition is about $6,296, or $13.49 per square foot.

The average offer for a temporary easement is about $1,973, or $3.40 per square foot.

So far, 16 owners have agreed to deals, Mundelein Public Works Director Adam Boeche said.

Some owners haven't responded to or have rejected the village's offers. Some of the properties are in foreclosure and the village has been unable to get responses from the mortgage lender.

In some cases, the village has been unable to find or communicate with the heirs of deceased land owners.

Trustees have agreed to use their legal powers of eminent domain to forcibly purchase the land they need from any unwilling sellers. It's the first time in decades village leaders have resorted to eminent domain for a project.

Talks are continuing with people who haven't accepted the village's offers.

"We haven't finished all of our negotiations so it may be more (than $202,400)," Village Administrator John Lobaito said.

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