Downtown Joliet developer awaits $610,000 extension on tax incentives

Joliet City Council to vote on Tuesday

The purpose of the passageway as a loading area for horse-drawn wagons when the Munroe Building was built in the late 19th Century as a wholesale grocery store was one of the points of interest during the Aug. 27, 2021 architectural tour of downtown Joliet.

The Joliet City Council will vote Tuesday on a 12-year extension on tax incentives worth nearly $610,000 for the redevelopment of two downtown buildings.

The incentives will apply to the Auditorium Building at 150 N. Chicago St., that Mike Petry has been converting into luxury condominiums with the assistance of tax incentives since 2007, and the Munroe Building, another Petry property at 20 E. Cass St., which is being redeveloped for apartments.

The incentives would come in the form of a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district, which allows property tax payments to be used for property development, rather than going to local government.

The matter was presented to the City Council at a workshop session on Monday with brief comments from City Manager James Capparelli and no questions from the council.

“He (Petry) is fully eligible 100% for the TIF,” Capparelli said.

Capparelli said staff checked into Petry’s bank and tax records for the properties to ensure his eligibility for continued TIF incentives.

Staff reports on the TIF extension state that, according to Petry, he took on redevelopment of another downtown building, the Barber Building, with the understanding that TIFs would be extended for the Auditorium and Munroe buildings.

The Barber Building, a 19th Century building on Chicago Street, also has been converted to residences.

The city plans for downtown redevelopment encourage the creation of residential units to create a market for business in the district.

The staff reports say an examination of bank statements indicate that the extension of the TIF incentives is needed to overcome financial shortfalls at both the Auditorium Building and Munroe Building projects.

Petry faces expenses at the Munroe Building, including $150,000 for a new elevator and $75,000 for a roof, according to the staff reports.