Despite community opposition, Mundelein trustees all approve Thorntons gas station plan

Disregarding continued objections from some area residents, Mundelein's village board on Monday approved plans for a gas station and convenience store on the village's north side.

The Thorntons station will be built on the northeast corner of routes 45 and 176. The former Original Omega Restaurant and a vacant industrial building stand on the land now, and both will be razed.

The developer, Northbrook-based GMX Real Estate Group, doesn't actually need permission to build a gas station on that corner because the nearly 3-acre site already is zoned for such a use. But GMX's plan didn't meet building code requirements for lighting, fence height and building location.

So, the company asked the board to grant three code variances. Trustees unanimously approved those variances Monday with no debate or discussion among themselves.

The developer initially floated a gas station plan last year but withdrew it from consideration after nearby residents and the village's planning and zoning commission voiced concerns about traffic, the environment and other issues.

GMX submitted a revised proposal to village hall in October. Changes included a smaller convenience store and the elimination of diesel fueling stations for large trucks.

Last month, trustees formally directed staffers to draft the documents voted upon Monday.

Five audience members at Monday's meeting spoke against the plan at the start of the session. They included Sara Larkin and her husband, Ted, who again objected to the noise the station will create and artificial light at night.

While Sara Larkin said she's happy plans for the station have shrunk, "we still don't want any gas station there."

Ted Larkin objected to the planned round-the-clock operation and called for the station's hours to be reduced. The board didn't heed his request.

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