Plans for gun store, shooting range draw critics in Mundelein
A Buffalo Grove business that sells realistic-looking air- and gas-powered guns wants to move to Mundelein and expand its sales to include actual firearms.
MiR Tactical also intends to run a shooting range at the proposed Mundelein location, 800 E. Route 45. An indoor training area for nonlethal weapons has been requested, too.
Plans for an outdoor training area were scrapped after concerns from nearby residents, MiR Tactical CEO Roman Botashoff said.
"It was not worth the headache," Botashoff said.
The outdoor training area isn't the only aspect of the plan that's drawn concerns, however. Some neighbors say they don't want a gun shop or a shooting range near their homes.
Among them is Vernon Hills resident Emily Crutchfield, who lives in the neighborhood across the street from the site.
"Although it is great that a business is interested in this long-vacant property, I am very uncomfortable with the idea of a gun store being within walking distance of my home," Crutchfield wrote in an email to Mundelein officials.
In another email to the village, Mundelein resident Jane Dugan called the plan "a terrible idea."
"The last thing the village needs is this type of business," Dugan wrote.
The site is on the north side of Route 45 just east of Route 83. A vacant retail building that last held a water bed store more than a decade ago remains there.
The property also is immediately west of the proposed site for the Transitional Care of Lake County nursing home. Village officials in March approved plans for that $30 million facility, which will replace Lake County's Winchester House nursing home. Construction is set to start this summer.
MiR Tactical already has an office and warehouse in Mundelein, at 220 Terrace Drive. No sales occur there.
Botashoff said that office and the Buffalo Grove shop would consolidate at the Route 45 location.
In addition to retail space, a two-lane shooting range would be created within a shipping container on the property, he said. The range would be for law-enforcement officers or people who make appointments, he said.
The company's proposal needs village approval because shooting ranges aren't permitted in that commercial zone.
A public hearing before the village's planning and zoning commission was scheduled for Wednesday night, but the discussion was canceled because of a bureaucratic error by a village staffer, Community Development Director Amanda Orenchuk said.
MiR Tactical can request a hearing on a different date, Orenchuk said. Botashoff said the company intends to schedule a new hearing.
He hopes to ease people's concerns and answer their questions when the public hearing is rescheduled.
"We're looking forward to that meeting," he said.