Sunday, August 19, 2018 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews
Featured image: A property at 2126 S. 17th Ave. in Broadview that is owned by the village. The Broadview board recently voted to sale the property to a private developer. | Google Maps
During a regular meeting on Aug. 6, the Broadview Board of Trustees voted 6-0 to approve the sale of a village-owned storefront property at 2126 S. 17th Ave. in Broadview to Private Capital Equity Trust.
Private Capital, which offered $35,000 in cash for the building, won the bid over the nonprofit Proviso Habitat for Humanity, which offered $30,000 in cash. The building was appraised at $41,000, according to village officials.
David Upshaw, Broadview’s building commissioner, said that Private Capital is looking to develop the building into either retail or restaurant space.
He said that he was adamantly against the board granting the developer’s request of $125,000 in Tax Increment Finance (TIF) incentives.
“I think the property should be sold for cash and that’s it,” Upshaw told board members.
The building, Upshaw said, is a single-story property that was gutted out and that features vacant land in the back for parking. The board will sell the property in the condition that it’s currently in.
Trustees said that they preferred Private Capital’s bid over Proviso Habitat’s because the former will generate sales and property tax revenue; nonprofits typically generate neither.
Broadview Mayor Katrina Thompson and Trustee Sherman Jones said that residents have been telling them that they want more retail and restaurant options in the village’s Roosevelt Road and 17th Avenue business corridors.
“I’ve been hearing residents say we want more places to eat and something that will be attractive,” Thompson said.
Jones said that “people have been asking for places where they can go to eat and so they don’t have to drive into Oak Park or Oak Brook to eat a meal or whatever may be the case.”
Trustees Judy Brown-Marino and John Ealey both indicated that they would not be comfortable handing out TIF incentives to Private Capital.
“I consider asking to buy the building for $35,000 and asking for $125,000 to be irresponsible,” Ealey said.
In the end, however, both trustees voted in favor of the motion, which only addressed the $35,000 cash purchase. No TIF incentives were mentioned in the motion.
Jones, however, said that other developments in the area, such as the Walgreens, the Broadview Family Restaurant, the Corner Spot Cafe and Dunkin Donuts — all on Roosevelt Road — were developed with TIF assistance.
“[Those establishments] were bought with TIF assistance, because without it they wouldn’t make the numbers crunch financially,” Jones said.
“Whatever we lose on the front-end, we’ll gain 10 times over on the back-end,” he added. “It just makes sense. We have gotten zero property taxes [on 2126 S. 17th Ave.] for at least 12 years that I’m aware of.”
Brown-Marino said that she was concerned that the development, which several village officials said is associated with a barbecue joint in the area, would continue to sit vacant for many years even after the purchase.
“I’d like to see us put it back out to bid,” she said before eventually voting in favor of Private Capital’s bid.
The Aug. 6 vote doesn’t necessarily finalize the purchase, village officials said. There are still details that need to be ironed out before the board votes on the terms of a final contract at some point in the future. VFP
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