Montgomery OKs final plans for first unit of 204-acre project off Orchard Road in Kendall County

Karis Acquisitions, LLC of Schaumburg is seeking village of Montgomery approval to subdivide, rezone and develop the vacant parcel near the southeast corner of Orchard Road and Caterpillar Drive as the Karis Center for Commerce. Orchard Road is shown on the map to the left. (Map courtesy of the village of Montgomery)

Plans for a 204-acre industrial and commercial development east of Orchard Road in the Kendall County portion of Montgomery are moving forward as a result of action taken by the Village Board.

In two 5-0 ballots Monday evening, June 12, the board approved a final plat of subdivision and a development agreement for the first unit of the Karis Center for Commerce. Board member Matt Bauman was absent from the meeting and did not vote.

Karis Acquisitions LLC of Schaumburg will develop the project on a vacant parcel south of Caterpillar Drive.

As proposed by Karis, the project will be developed in three phases, beginning with the construction of a 500,000-square-foot building on the southern portion of the property just west of the Burlington Northern-Santa Fe railway tracks. The building will have an adjoining rail yard and house Ravago, a Belgium-based firm that is active in polymer and chemical distribution, plastic recycling and compounding of plastic and elastomeric raw materials.

Subsequent development phases will consist of a 300,000-square-foot addition to the building along with a second 300,000-square-foot building and a 1.2 million-square-foot warehouse and distribution facility with outdoor storage.

The project also includes a 5.75-acre parcel zoned B-2 for retail business development along the east side of Orchard Road south of Caterpillar Drive.

Traffic access to the site will be off an extension of Galena Road east from Orchard Road and from the construction of a new road, Karis Way, to extend from Caterpillar Drive south across the property.

In addition to its location within the village, the project site is within the boundaries of Oswego School District 308, the Oswego Fire Protection District and the Oswego Public Library District. Portions of the property are in the Oswegoland and Fox Valley park districts, respectively.

According to information provided by Karis to the village, the initial Ravago facility will be similar to another facility operated by the firm in Medina, Ohio, and function as the firm’s primary plastic resin distribution center to serve customers in the Chicago region.

An estimated 80 to 90 employees will work at the facility in jobs that include customer service, packaging/production operators, maintenance technicians and forklift operators. Wages will range from $20 to $30 an hour for hourly employees, while management salaries will range from $60,000 to $170,000 a year.

The initial phase of the project has an estimated value of $75 million to $90 million and an anticipated operational date of July 31, 2024.

Sonya Abt, Montgomery director of community development, said the village received an online inquiry the week of March 20 asking whether Ravago would be recycling plastics on the site and if the project raised any public health or safety concerns.

“We replied back they would not be recycling any of the plastic on-site and there is no manufacturing,” Abt said.

In a memo to the board, Village Attorney Laura Julien noted the final plat approved Monday evening served to divide the property into two lots creating the southern site for the Ravago development.

During a meeting March 2, the village’s Planning and Zoning Commission voted 7-0 to approve a recommendation in support of the project. The board voted unanimously to accept the commission’s favorable recommendation at its March 13 meeting.