Two decades from now, the Spring Hill Mall campus could be bustling with pedestrian pathways, residential developments, new entertainment options and mixed-use buildings.
Restaurants, offices and lodging could complement the area's core retail concept.
Public event spaces or an institutional facility such as a library could fill in the gaps.
That's the vision that was presented to West Dundee trustees this week by the Atlanta-based Sizemore Group, a firm hired to create a framework for the area's potential redevelopment.
Company representatives have been working with village officials to develop conceptual designs for how the mall campus could be transformed into a "scaled-up downtown" in the next five to 20 years, Community Development Director Tim Scott said. Those plans, intended to be phased in over time, are centered around themes of timelessness and economic vitality, he said.
"The plan at this point is both inspirational and aspirational, and it's designed to advance the notion of how the area can evolve over time," Scott said. "The idea here is to be as transformative as we can."
Nothing about Sizemore's illustrative framework is set in stone, largely because much of the plan is dependent on market conditions and other stakeholders. The purpose was to provide a vision for what the area could become beyond the completion of an ongoing $50 million renovation to Spring Hill Mall, Village President Chris Nelson said.
The first phase, which wouldn't take place for another five to 10 years, includes a residential component and the development of parcels surrounding the mall. It also shows the creation of an internal street network with walkable, tree-lined blocks and a retail-centric Main Street.
In subsequent phases extending another 10 years down the road, the area could undergo an even greater transformation with more development in the lots directly around the mall. Eventually, plans show the mall building has the potential to be subdivided and converted into a town center with roads and walkways between parcels.
"I was very happy with the results," Nelson said. "Some may see the information and realize that it's a dramatic change over the next several years, but I believe that's both necessary and intentional."
The village board Monday directed Sizemore to develop a scope of services for the next planning phase. Village officials also intend to hold conversations next month with mall owner Rouse Properties and representatives from Carpentersville, where part of the mall property falls.
"I think it helps to have this narrative already established," Nelson said. "This all needs to work with what the stakeholders and market will bear, but we did feel it provided a good starting point for those discussions."