Self-storage facility coming to Wheaton

A plan for a four-story, self-storage facility has cleared the Wheaton City Council despite opposition from the owner of a nearby Carol Stream shopping center.

Northfield-based BRB Development LLC is set to develop the 80,772-square-foot indoor facility from the Lock Up chain on a long-vacant parking lot at the northwest corner of Main Street and Geneva Road next to the Main Street Marketplace shopping center. The unincorporated parcel also will be annexed into Wheaton.

Plans for the project have met resistance from both Carol Stream officials and representatives from Regency Centers, the owner of Geneva Crossing, a shopping center anchored by a Dominick’s grocery store in Carol Stream.

In what one Wheaton councilman labeled an “unusual” move during a public hearing in September, the Carol Stream village board passed a resolution objecting to the proposal for the self-storage facility. Among their concerns was that the height of the facility would reduce the visibility of the Geneva Crossing shopping center.

An attorney for Regency Centers renewed opposition to the project Monday.

“We just felt that this is not an appropriate use for the site and that there are more appropriate uses,” Michelle Feola said.

But Wheaton officials have pointed out the site’s accessibility issues. The owner of Geneva Crossing has historically denied access from the lot to the main drive serving the shopping center.

The self-storage project received a boost in December when the council passed an annexation agreement that would take effect if BRB Development LLC, the development arm of Lock Up, bought the lot within 90 days of the city’s approval.

The developer met the deadline. And this week, the council unanimously approved the annexation. In a separate 6-0 vote, the council backed a zoning measure granting a special-use permit for the project. Councilman W. Thoreson “Thor” Saline, who was appointed to the council Jan. 22, abstained from the second vote because he was not familiar with the objections.

City Manager Don Rose said the project now conforms with the city’s stormwater requirements. Previous plans complied with the countywide standards, but not the city’s stricter standard that requires all commercial and industrial developments to provide stormwater detention.

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