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posted: 1/10/2017 5:30 AM

Hoffman Estates again rejects preschool proposal

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  • The Hoffman Estates village board Monday renewed its December rejection of a proposal for a Goddard School for young children to be built on this site on the east side of Barrington Road. A slim majority of the board members said they preferred to reserve the space for retail businesses.

      The Hoffman Estates village board Monday renewed its December rejection of a proposal for a Goddard School for young children to be built on this site on the east side of Barrington Road. A slim majority of the board members said they preferred to reserve the space for retail businesses.
    Eric Peterson | Staff Photographer

 
 

Convinced a misunderstanding must have played a role, the would-be developers of a Goddard School for preschoolers in Hoffman Estates asked village officials Monday to reconsider their 4-3 vote last month against waiving a retail-only restriction on the proposed site.

But the backers of the project walked away with the exact same rejection vote.

"I didn't vote no last time because of retail," Trustee Gary Pilafas told the developers. "That wasn't really in play for me. You haven't really given me anything new so my position hasn't changed."

While fellow trustees Gary Stanton and Karen Mills as well as Mayor Bill McLeod cast their no votes specifically because of their desire for retail on the Barrington Road site, Pilafas said his concern was about demand when there is already an existing Goddard School in neighboring Schaumburg.

Barry Millman of Horizon Realty Services Inc., the real estate representative for the project, said three people from Goddard Schools' headquarters in Pennsylvania came out to assess the market for a new location and were convinced of the need.

One of the local project's backers, Dr. Sanjay Patel, said he and his business partners also did their homework before they made themselves ready for a $3 million investment.

But Pilafas said only seeing the data they said they had -- but didn't bring -- could convince him a Hoffman Estates location would not overlap the market area of the Schaumburg one.

Patel said after the vote that he doubted the data his partners had would have changed even Pilafas' vote. Though he said he still believes there's a market for the school, it will have to be built somewhere other than the favored spot just south of the Fountain Crossing strip mall on the north side of the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway.

"This was the best site," Patel said. "This was the site we negotiated."

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