Plainfield moves closer to Costco approvals, including incentive

Special meeting of the Village Board to be held Monday

A new Costco Wholesale on the border of Plainfield and Joliet is closer to becoming a reality.

Plainfield trustees Monday night moved two measures forward for a large-scale development on about
54 acres at the northwest corner of the Interstate 55 and Route 30 interchange that Costco will anchor.

Village trustees agreed to allow ordinances to be prepared for an updated annexation agreement for the property as well as an ordinance granting approval of the special use request for the proposed Boulevard project.

There will be a special meeting of the Village Board on Monday, at which both these ordinances will be voted on. A site plan for and a sales tax rebate agreement with Costco also will be voted on at that meeting, Economic Development Manager Jake Melrose said.

Melrose said he could not divulge the details of the sales tax rebate incentive until closer to Monday’s meeting. However, he said the city expects Costco to generate about $1 million in sales tax annually.

The Boulevard project envisions a large pedestrian-friendly shopping center with the 152,000-square-foot Costco store as its anchor.

The Costco with a gas station will be built on about 17 acres of the land that falls in both Joliet and Plainfield, as part of the first phase of a four-phase project. About 480,000 square feet of restaurants, retail and a hotel is envisioned for the overall project, Melrose said.

Melrose said Costco aims to open in November 2020.

The project includes construction of a roadway from Route 30 to Renwick Road, along with a bridge over Mink Creek, which borders the project to the northwest, Melrose said.

The 54-acre parcel is part of a 170-acre property owned by 55/30 Acquisition that goes from Route 30 to Renwick Road and runs along the CN railroad tracks. A residential component is being considered as part of long-term plans for the property north of the creek, Melrose said.

Plainfield trustees unanimously approved an intergovernmental agreement with Joliet on July 1 to share costs for roadway maintenance, mutual aid and sanitary sewer and water service for the project.

The Joliet City Council will review the IGA as well as all other Boulevard items at its Aug. 20 meeting, Melrose said.

Russ Whitaker, attorney for 55/30, said at Monday’s meeting the project is expected to break ground in the next month, once all approvals are received.

“We do have one hanging chad, which is an incentive [tax rebate] agreement, which is intended to cover public improvements associated with the project,” Whitaker said.

Whitaker said 55/30 is not able to make any announcements yet about other businesses that may be part of the project.

Plans for The Boulevard were approved in 2007 but did not move forward because of the recession, Melrose said. In the past year, the village has been in talks with Costco to finally bring the store to the area.

“I’m really excited to see this take off,” said Trustee Margie Bonuchi, who presided over Monday’s meeting, with Mayor Mike Collins absent.

Separately, village trustees denied a request from Star Events to hold its Rocktober Beerfest at Gregory B. Bott Park this year. Trustees indicated a few concerns, including that Bott Park is in a residential area and noise would carry into the adjacent subdivisions. Trustees were also concerned that limited parking at Bott Park would lead to overflow onto residential streets.

The three-day beer and live music event debuted last year in Plainfield.