First offer puts nursing home on Kuhn property

A developer has expressed interest in building a nursing home facility on a vacant 7.5 acre piece of property owned by the Carol Stream Public Library, officials said Wednesday.

Representatives from Lombard-based Alter 360, a realty firm representing the nursing home company, sent the library an offer to buy the land for $1,225,000, Board President Mike Wade said.

The property at 2N540 Kuhn Road has been on the market since December and is listed for $1.8 million.

The library board Wednesday discussed possible prices for a counteroffer in closed session, and in open session voted 6-0 to authorize Wade to “perform any actions needed to set the price” previously discussed in order to sell the property.

Wade wouldn’t say what the counteroffer will be.

He said Realty Executives, the library’s Realtor, has received “many inquiries” on the property, but has only received the one letter of intent from Alter 360.

According to Wade, the letter states it is a “preliminary expression of general intentions,” and for discussion purposes only.

“This is a long drawn out process,” Wade said. “This isn’t a firm offer.”

Should the library and nursing home company come to agreement on a purchase price, the library would then inform the village, its corporate authority, which has the first right to buy or lease the land. Wade said the village would have 45 days to respond.

“The village has to match if it wanted to buy it,” Wade said.

Village officials have said they’re waiting to reserve the first right to buy or lease until other offers have been made to get a better idea of what the market determines the property to be worth.

The land was purchased from Richard and Betty Lou Kammes in 2003 with the intention of building a new library facility there. But voters rejected plans for a new library in three separate referendums. That led Wade and a majority of trustees to propose the land be put on the market.

“I think I’m following the mandate taxpayers said in three referendums,” Wade said.

He said the library board isn’t in a hurry to sell the property, and doesn’t think it will sell by the April 9 election. He acknowledged a new board majority could be seated after the election and could reverse the direction of this board.

A total of ten candidates are running on two slates for library board. Wade’s Support Your Carol Stream Library slate of five candidates includes some who have long expressed opposition to the building of a new library, and have advocated for the library to sell the land. They are opposed by five candidates in the Support the Carol Stream Library slate.

Meanwhile, library trustees agreed Wednesday to table discussion about a potential lease deal with the park district for the land. Trustee Dominick Jeffrey said he wants to wait until the library receives a response from the state about its request for tax exempt status for the Kuhn Road property.

The library recently received a tax exemption from DuPage County, officials said.

Betty Lou Kammes had lived in a house on the property until her death in 2010. The house was demolished last year, though the property is still zoned for residential.

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