A significant step in what could be Antioch's first large residential development in several years has been taken with the pending annexation of 71 acres at North Avenue and Trevor Road.
The village board Monday unanimously authorized ordinances be drawn to annex, rezone and grant a special use to allow 154 single-family houses to be built on what is known as the Herman Farm. The measures will be considered at a future meeting and, if approved at that time, will become official.
Lexington Homes requested the actions more than a year ago, but the matter was continued to address comments from neighbors involving traffic and other issues.
"They did reduce the density of the project (and) based on the board's vote, they appeared comfortable," with the proposal, according to Michael Garrigan, the village's community development director.
Lexington bought the property in 2005 when Antioch was booming, but was stymied when the housing market tanked.
With a potential rebound in sight, Lexington wants to get approvals, known as entitlements, so it can proceed or sell the property to another builder, Garrigan added.
"We're really getting it ready to make it a viable project. Without annexation and preliminary plat, there's nothing to show for it," said Bill Rotolo, Lexington vice president.
While it has some single-family projects, Lexington is focused on building townhouses in Chicago and close-in suburbs, Rotolo said.
"We are going to market it (Antioch project), but it will be in 2018. I think it will end up being a venture we do with another builder."
Garrigan said open properties are becoming available and the market may be loosening.
"It's the first new (residential) development to come through the process in 10 years," Garrigan said of the Lexington plan.
Concerns at a public hearing last year included the number of houses proposed and impacts on traffic and stormwater, for example, but those issues have been addressed, according to Garrigan.
Lexington reduced the number of houses from 172 to 154 and a proposed park was removed. The village instead would get a cash donation if plans proceed.
"There's a park (Trevor Creek Park) within walking distance of this development, but they (also) have a series of pocket parks," in the design, Garrigan said.
As proposed, the average sale price would be $350,000 and the average lot size 11,000 square feet, he added.