Row houses added to plans for Schaumburg's massive north-side project
Significant progress continues to be made on the simultaneous redevelopment of the former 322-acre Motorola Solutions campus in Schaumburg and the planned transformation of the area across Meacham Road to the east into an entertainment district complementary to the Schaumburg Convention Center it neighbors.
Among the latest steps is developer D.R. Horton Inc.'s proposal for a 260-unit row house development along Algonquin Road on 20 of the 225 acres master developer UrbanStreet Group is calling the Veridian development.
It may soon join such projects already underway on the former Motorola site as a Topgolf entertainment venue opening this fall, the 260-unit Element at Veridian apartment building opening in the spring or summer of next year, a 110-unit assisted-living and memory care facility, and the new global headquarters of The Boler Company.
The first aspect of the redevelopment to be completed was the new public road, Progress Parkway, that winds through the Veridian development from just north of the I-90 tollway on Meacham Road westward to Algonquin Road.
But another new street, allowing further movement within the Chicago-Loop-sized property, is already being prepared, UrbanStreet Group managing partner Bob Burk said.
While the demolition of 1.5 million square feet of Motorola's abandoned buildings has so far dictated a geographical order to the redevelopment, that soon will no longer be a factor in deciding what goes next, he added.
While a project with an expected 10- to 15-year build out anticipates changing economic cycles along the way, the diversity of uses being planned should help counteract the impact of temporary downturns to the greatest degree possible, Burk said.
Perhaps the component whose timing is most vulnerable to the health of the economy is the urban main street-style project called The District, which will combine residential, retail, dining and such other entertainment concepts as a movie theater, Burk said. Tenants for that aspect of the redevelopment are already being pursued.
Along with the just completed roadway, the village of Schaumburg is taking primary responsibility for the 12-acre urban-style park in the center of the Veridian development as well as the entirety of the entertainment district on the east side of Meacham Road in the shadow of its existing convention center and Renaissance Hotel.
As with the overall development, the park is intended to serve several different types of audience with a band shell, two large lawn areas, a central hub building, a sculpture garden and water features. And it too will likely develop in phases.
Meanwhile, village officials have sent out requests for proposals from potential developers of an entertainment district on the east side of Meacham, even as they continue to consider building a five-level, approximately $30 million parking deck directly north of the convention center.
A long-discussed performing arts center that could serve as an anchor for the entertainment district is still on the table, but officials have agreed that a partner in the theater industry would be necessary.
In distinguishing entertainment venues that would be better suited on the east side of Meacham Road than within the Veridian development, the village is thinking in terms of what might suit proximity to the convention center and Renaissance Hotel, Schaumburg Economic Development Director Matt Frank said.
Burk agreed that the coordination of the two projects which the village is overseeing is of great importance to both.
"The more development the better," Burk said. "We want to make sure the uses are compatible and don't cannibalize each other."
A Meacham Road corridor study the village is currently pursuing intends to ensure the new developments not only avoid competing with each other but also with existing businesses in and near Woodfield Mall, Frank said.
He also emphasized that the redevelopment plans along Algonquin Road do not extend to the Walden Condominiums to the east.
In fact, the improvements happening nearby should only enhance the property values and amenities at Walden, he said.
Though the sale of the majority of Motorola's property kicked off the major redevelopment now under way, it could also be considered to have begun with Zurich North America's building of its new headquarters there after Motorola sold it the southeast corner of the property a couple years earlier.