On August 6, 2019, Winnetka’s Village Council voted unanimously to repeal approvals for the One Winnetka development project due to the developer’s non-compliance with the development agreement and zoning approvals. The Village has also filed a complaint in court against the developer to compel action on numerous property maintenance issues.
The development agreement required that the developer provide a third-party financial guaranty of completion on or before November 18, 2018. It also required the developer to close on the Conney’s Pharmacy property and record the Plat of Subdivision no later than June 29, 2019. Both deadlines were missed, and caused a default of the agreement.
“Under all of the zoning approvals, the developer’s failure to meet the Plat of Subdivision date authorizes the Village Council to terminate their approvals,” said Peter Friedman, Village Attorney, before the Council voted to repeal the zoning approvals on August 6. “Section 13 of the development agreement says that the development agreement terminates automatically if the zoning approvals must terminate.”
Friedman noted that progress had been made in addressing property maintenance issues, including the provision of alarm monitoring services and removal of combustibles throughout most of the buildings. Concerns remain about the buildings being weather-tight and about unauthorized access to the buildings and trespassing in the vacant properties. Village staff will continue to monitor the properties and perform inspections.
The properties remain privately owned, and any issues relating to their maintenance or sale are matters for the property owner. The Village continues to monitor the vacant buildings for health, building code, and safety issues.
“The One Winnetka site continues to offer the opportunity for a great development project,” said Rob Bahan, Village Manager. “Winnetka remains open for business and welcomes conversations about future site opportunities.”