Shopping center with old Elk Grove Bowl gets its tax boost for redevelopment

  • A new tax increment financing district approved by Elk Grove Village trustees Tuesday night includes the shopping center at the corner of Arlington Heights and Higgins roads that the village is planning to redevelop.

      A new tax increment financing district approved by Elk Grove Village trustees Tuesday night includes the shopping center at the corner of Arlington Heights and Higgins roads that the village is planning to redevelop. Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

 
 
Posted5/25/2022 5:03 AM

Elk Grove Village trustees on Tuesday enacted a series of ordinances establishing a new tax increment financing district that includes the oldest shopping center in town and the long-standing bowling alley that closed last month.

The 25.5-acre special taxing district, approved unanimously by the village board, was set up to help fund the village's redevelopment efforts at the southeast corner of Arlington Heights and Higgins roads. It's where officials are envisioning a mixed-use development of apartments and retail at what is the northern gateway to town.

 

With the board's approval of three ordinances Tuesday night, property taxes paid to local governments like schools, the park district and township will be frozen at their current levels for 23 years, and taxes collected above those levels from within the area will go into a special village fund to pay for redevelopment projects.

"This is an important aspect, because by having it TIF-eligible, it allocates funds available for us to make public improvements which we know are needed for that older site, and it makes it more desirable for the private sector to want to develop a project that we'll all be very proud of," Mayor Craig Johnson said.

"That's a big step. Now we just gotta get moving."

The village plans to send out a request to developers this summer for prospective plans for the Elk Grove Woods Plaza and Elk Grove Bowl sites. The municipality paid $12.7 million for the properties in two separate deals last December, while announcing plans for a potential 250-unit apartment building of three to five stories on the bowling alley site closer to Arlington Heights Road as well as a retail building along Higgins.

Johnson said he's open to other ideas developers may present, but his goal is to keep all businesses there open. The shopping center includes Jarosch Bakery, Tensuke Market, Rose Garden Cafe and 7 Mile Cycles.

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Elk Grove Bowl finished its last frame April 30 upon the retirement of third-generation owner Debbie Handler, whose family started the businesses 60 years ago. Nearly all of the contents of the 40-lane bowling alley have been removed, and the village is making preparations to demolish the building in August.

On Tuesday, the board approved a $86,690 contract with McHenry-based HR Green to provide engineering, bidding and construction oversight for the upcoming demolition project, which will be bid under a separate contract.

The village could pick a developer as soon as this fall and have construction begin next year -- done in phases to avoid disrupting the operating businesses, Johnson said.

Besides the corner shopping center, the new TIF district includes six commercial properties on the north side of Higgins from Arlington Heights Road to Gordon Street. It abuts a different TIF established in 2017 in conjunction with the redevelopment of the old Busse family farm into the Elk Grove Technology Park.

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