Plans for a trucking terminal near the Lake County Fairgrounds have gained tentative Grayslake village board approval.
Saia Inc.'s terminal would be used by tractor-trailers to collect and deliver freight in the Chicago area, company spokeswoman Jeannie S. Jump said.
"Many of our customers operate in the retail, home improvement, electronics and food service industries," Jump told the Daily Herald on Thursday.
Grayslake village board members, during a nonvoting committee meeting this week, informally agreed that 33 acres should be annexed for the project west of Midlothian Road between Winchester and Peterson roads, near the fairgrounds. A formal vote to bring the land within the village is expected next month.
Mayor Rhett Taylor said Saia's decision to build the 50,000-square-foot facility is significant. He said it's a quality project that can serve to show the village government is friendly toward businesses and predictable.
"I think it is great news for Lake County in general," Taylor added.
Jump said Georgia-based Saia plans to hire about 60 employees. She said local drivers typically earn $40,000 to $50,000 annually.
"As long as there are no delays, we hope to be in the facility by the end of 2015," she said.
Provided the 33 acres are annexed, Grayslake's boundaries would creep up to Mundelein. Responding to what they said were concerns from residents south of Saia's site, Grayslake officials said the company would be required to have a 6-acre buffer from a residential area on the south.
Saia's real estate manager, Jesse Kelley, told the Grayslake village board the company uses technology for its semitrailers that is focused on fuel economy and reduced emissions. Saia trucks also are being converted to a system with an automatic shut-off after five minutes of idling.
"We want to be a good neighbor," Kelley said. "We want to be good to the environment."
Saia's site is within the boundaries of Fremont Elementary District 79 and Mundelein High School District 120. The property is adjacent to 17 acres already within Grayslake's boundaries where 175 upscale condominium garages for car enthusiasts and a 4,500-square-foot clubhouse have yet to be built since receiving approval in 2012.