Lake Zurich reveals new plans for downtown improvements
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Lake Zurich officials revealed new conceptual plans they've created for a downtown retail center and lakeside beverage pavilion in a presentation this week on their downtown redevelopment efforts.
The village staff envisions the retail center on the vacant lot near the corner of Main and Lake streets. The two-story building would provide 19,000 square feet of new restaurant or commercial space and sweeping views of the village's namesake lake.
The 400-square-foot beverage pavilion would be at Breezewald Park on Old Rand Road near the lake.
There are no immediate plans to pay for the construction of either building, which are estimated to cost $3.5 million and $80,000, respectively.
"People are saying we need more retail downtown," said Sarosh Saher, the village's director of community development. "So we took the additional step of trying to envision through pictures what this concept would look like."
Village Manager Ray Keller said the staff is constantly looking at what it could do to make downtown better.
"This is something that the village has been grappling with for at least 15 years," Keller said. "We've embarked in a crusade, an effort, an enterprise, whatever term you want to use, to acquire property and redevelop it and reshape what the core of the community should look like and how it should function over time."
Assistant Village Manager Roy Witherow said the village has stepped up its marketing and recruitment efforts to the private sector in the last two years. The village's first contact with Life Time Fitness, which is proposing a 125,000-square-foot fitness center at the former Hackney's location, came because village staff members attended the Navy Pier Trade Show, he said.
Mayor Tom Poynton commended the staff for the presentation and encouraged village residents to get involved in promoting downtown business development.
"Any input and any help we get over and above what we provide here is readily accepted," Poynton said. "I'm not talking about 'Oh, I'd like a Portillos' or 'I'd like something else.' I'm talking about real good viable opportunities."