‘It takes a while’: Arlington 425 closer to getting a shovel in the ground

Nearly five years after receiving zoning approvals, Arlington 425 — the proposed three-building residential and commercial campus that is touted to be the largest development in more than two decades in Arlington Heights — is closer to getting a shovel in the ground.

Developer Bruce Adreani of Norwood Builders is in for building permit review at village hall for the first structures to be built: a 10-story, 234-unit apartment building with streetside retail at 225 W. Campbell St. and a five-story parking garage on Highland Avenue.

At the same time, detailed engineering plans are being reviewed for the rest of the downtown project, which calls for a five-story, 85-unit building of apartments or condominiums along Chestnut Avenue.

Progress has been slowed by financing woes, the pandemic, building material costs and supply chain issues. Even the Bears’ possible move to town — and how the team’s Arlington Park redevelopment could affect the village’s downtown — had been cited by Adreani last year as a reason for delay.

The latest slowdown came after Adreani returned to the village’s design commission over the winter to authorize architectural changes to the Campbell building and Highland garage. Only after those modifications were approved could he submit final engineering plans and apply for a building permit in February and March.

“It was quite trying to get before the design commission and pass everything, because they just didn’t do it the first time without modifications, where we had to go back and reconfigure everything to their liking. It was a task,” Adreani said. “With those things in the making is why it took a little bit longer. But sometimes in life and anything worthwhile, it takes a while.”

Adreani and his attorney Stephen Messutta were back at the village board this week to ask for another extension to their zoning approvals — this one for six months, after a 12-month extension was granted a year ago. The board approved the developer’s scaled-back plans in 2021 after approving a larger project in 2019.

They now have until Nov. 3 to obtain a building permit and come back to the plan commission and village board for final plat of subdivision approval, plus get outside agencies including ComEd, Nicor Gas and the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago to sign off.

That doesn’t mean construction would start before then. In a bid to secure financing, the developer is circulating a pro forma to potential lenders.

At one point, the project was estimated to cost $150 million.

“We are hoping that pricing as we’ve seen in the last several months may actually get a little bit better for us, and we’re hoping that we can look to final pricing once we get the permits approved,” Messutta said.

“We’re looking to get it going. It’s been a long time coming,” he said.

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