Libertyville Hyundai dealership poised to build permanent home on Milwaukee Avenue

A recent addition to Libertyville's roster of car dealerships on Milwaukee Avenue is poised to build a permanent home there.

Village officials are set to approve Libertyville Hyundai's request to build a new facility on vacant property at 1001 S. Milwaukee Ave., immediately north of Libertyville Chevrolet and south of Advocate Condell Medical Center.

Libertyville Hyundai is a newcomer to the Libertyville Mile of Cars, a marketing organization for local dealers. The website lists a dozen dealerships selling 17 new vehicle brands, not including Hyundai or Tesla, whose dealerships both opened last fall.

Libertyville Hyundai has been leasing a temporary site at 1119 S. Milwaukee Ave., a former Mitsubishi dealership that had been vacant for about four years.

The owners of Libertyville Chevrolet also own the Hyundai dealership and the property to the north.

CESM LLC and Ed & Leo LLC want to divide an 8.7-acre parcel to create a 4-acre lot where a 26,900-square-foot Hyundai dealership would be built.

Hyundai sought several variations from village codes, including a reduction in the lot width from 250 to 215 feet as well as a side yard reduction for the building and parking.

After two public hearings, the village's advisory plan commission recommended approval of a special use permit as well as a concept and final plan, including for dividing the lot, subject to various conditions.

The village board on March 8 accepted the plan commission's report and is expected to approve the ordinance to make it official today. The closest Hyundai dealerships are in Gurnee, Highland Park, Palatine and Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Permits are being reviewed and construction is expected to begin in the coming weeks. Information presented to the village estimated the property will be valued at $10 million when the project is complete.

According to the application, Hyundai projected selling 100 new cars and 50 used cars a month. A fiscal impact analysis presented to the village estimated taxable sales revenue of $50 million.

Auto sales are an important part of the local economy. Sales tax received from the auto category accounts for little more than half the revenue in the village's general fund, which is used for day-to-day operations.

Over the last 20 years, automotive sales taxes received by the village peaked at $5.7 million in 2001. The village dipped to $3.89 million from that source in 2020 but rebounded to $4.69 million in 2021.

To protect its investment in the auto sales category, the village in late 2008 approved an incentive to allow dealerships to recoup a portion of sales taxes to fund some of their rehab or expansion costs. The village rebates as much as 60% of any new sales tax revenue, based on prior sales.

In 2011, CESM LLC, doing business as Libertyville Chevrolet, was the first eligible dealer to seek the sales tax rebate. Whether an incentive will be sought for the Hyundai project is unknown.

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  Temporary fencing was recently installed on the site of a proposed Hyundai dealership in Libertyville. Mick Zawislak/
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