Land Acquisition Issue Stirring Controversy in Barrington
O'Brien, Bill, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
A Barrington developer said he is shocked that village officials are talking behind the scenes about condemning his property when the two parties were negotiating toward its redevelopment.
For its part, the Village Center Redevelopment Commission said there are no plans to acquire the Market Center mall off Hough Street through eminent domain, but its members admit they have discussed it.
"Our plans are up in the air now," said Garo Kholamian, president of Barrington-based GK Development Inc., which is planning to develop 6.5 acres for retail stores, restaurants and offices.
As part of the plan, the unsuccessful mall that has only two tenants would be redeveloped, and the developer also has a commitment to acquire the nearby Adco Van & Storage Inc. site and redevelop it for retail and offices.
The commission objects, saying the village's downtown master plan calls for a combination of retail, offices and residential units, though village officials have not said what type of living space.
But while GK Development is trying to firm up its plans, members of the commission tasked with helping to formulate plans to redevelop the Village Center have discussed recently that perhaps the village should acquire the site and work with another developer.
The official word coming out of the commission is that the plan "does not meet the objectives of the Village Center master plan, and the developer should take a more comprehensive approach to develop the site rather than piecemeal. …