‘Itching to start’: Huntley approves sale of old village hall for $10

Huntley has officially sold its old village hall to Wauconda-based True North Properties for $10.

The village board on Thursday voted to approve the sale to True North, the same developer that converted the former Catty building to the Cornell apartment complex that opened this past fall.

The board also signed off on a redevelopment agreement and approved a special-use permit, allowing the building at 10987 Main St. to be converted into a restaurant and banquet space.

“We’re just excited,” said Nick Ieremciuc of True North Properties. “We’re just itching to start.”

Plans include demolishing the back of the current building and constructing a one-story addition that would include public restrooms.

Feedback from village trustees made its way into the project’s final design, including reducing the addition from two to one story and installing awnings on the building.

The Huntley Area Chamber of Commerce had been occupying the former village all, but moved the Union Special building in October.

In November, operators of Elgin-based Cafe Roma announced that they would be opening in the former village hall space.

The project is located within a tax increment financing district. A TIF district is a redevelopment incentive for which increased property tax revenue generated by new construction within the district is funneled back into the project to cover some redevelopment costs until the TIF expires, which is typically 23 years.

Wauconda-based True North Properties plans to convert Huntley’s old village hall into a restaurant and banquet space. Courtesy of Village of Huntley

Village documents indicate that the project will have $2.5 million of private investment, but the developer will receive 100% of the incremental property tax revenue for the first five years after construction is completed, which Huntley estimates is about $30,000 annually.

The village indicated that the developer also will get up to $150,000 reimbursed for building out the restaurant and get $50,000 annually for TIF-eligible expenses for the first five years. The total TIF funding the developer could receive is $550,000.

The special-use permit covers relief needed for the project, such as parking. Plans currently call for parking to be off-site at existing lots in and near the downtown area, such as the Main Street parking lot and other public parking nearby.

The village’s zoning ordinance requires 73 parking spaces for the 217-seat restaurant, or about one spot per three seats.

As part of the redevelopment agreement, construction is set to begin 30 days after the sale closing but has to have “substantial completion” by Sept. 30, 2025, according to village documents. If that is not the case, the developer will pay the village $100 per day until it is.

“I’m glad it’s finally come to fruition,” Mayor Tim Hoeft said.

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