How Mount Prospect might spur redevelopment in 'depressed area' of village

  • The Mount Prospect Park District's RecPlex at 420 W. Dempster St. is among the properties included within the proposed 505-acre South Mount Prospect Tax Increment Financing District.

      The Mount Prospect Park District's RecPlex at 420 W. Dempster St. is among the properties included within the proposed 505-acre South Mount Prospect Tax Increment Financing District. Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer, 2016

 
Updated 3/9/2022 7:31 PM

A 505-acre area on the south side of Mount Prospect qualifies for a tax increment financing district that village leaders hope spurs redevelopment of the mostly commercial and industrial properties there, a consultant told officials Tuesday.

The proposed TIF district would encompass land mostly south of Dempster Street and north of Oakton Street. Along with commercial properties, it includes the Mount Prospect Park District's Kopp Park and RecPlex, as well as land annexed in 2016 and 2017.

 

Consultant Geoff Dickinson of SB Friedman detailed some of the reasons the area would qualify for the economic development incentive, such as the age and condition of the buildings to the inadequate utility service there.

"Three-quarters of the buildings are old," he said. "Two-thirds of the parcels have deterioration."

Much of the area initially was developed as part of unincorporated Cook County, Dickinson added, "so it doesn't have essentially proper infrastructure to be in a municipality."

A TIF district works by freezing property tax payments to local governments from within the district at their current levels for up to 23 years. Any additional revenue generated by improvements or new development goes into a special village fund that can be used to pay for infrastructure upgrades and other enhancements within the district.

"It's basically one of the best impactful economic development tools that the village can use to invest in the area," Mount Prospect Community Development Director Bill Cooney said. "All those infrastructure improvements are necessary to make that area a viable commercial and industrial district."

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Redevelopment of the area, he added, would reduce property taxes for others in the village.

"I'm glad to see this finally coming to fruition.," Trustee Richard Rogers said. "We've been working on this for at least five years that I know of, maybe even longer than that. This whole area has been a depressed area. And I don't mean to degrade anybody who's in that area. But the streets, the sewers, the water have all been a disaster in that area."

The proposed budget for the TIF district is $145 million, including $125 million for public works improvements and $5 million for affordable housing construction.

Resident Linda Waycie commented on the affordable housing component, suggesting an affordable housing ordinance as a companion piece to the TIF district.

"It's not enough just to have a TIF district that has projects of low-income or very low-income housing," Waycie said.

A public hearing on the proposal is set for April 19, and the village board could vote on it as early as May 3.

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