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Hinsdale, Illinois |


Published Sept. 18, 2008

Hinsdale Club developers
scale back again

  By Christine Cuthbert

   High construction costs have led The Hinsdale Club developers to scale back the size of their project once more.
   During a public hearing before the plan commission Sept. 10, attorney Bruce Goldsmith proposed doing away with the underground parking structure as well as two stories of office space above store fronts in building F at Ogden Avenue and Salt Creek Lane.
   “Costs have increased substantially for concrete and steal,” said Goldsmith, who represents the developer, Foxford LLC. “Six months ago we priced out asphalt, and already since then it has had a 20 percent increase.”
   With only one floor, the building will now stand 39 feet high instead of the original 52 feet. Despite the lower height, the proposed upscale hotel behind the retail space will not be visible to passersby on Ogden, Goldsmith said. Since the development sits at the village’s eastern gateway, Foxford also made adjustments to assure the street side of the property remains aesthetically pleasing.
   “There will be low lying vegetation and canopy trees,” Goldsmith said. “You’ll have 20 foot trees from the beginning of the project. It has been upgraded to enhance the landscaping so we have a very nice streetscape on Ogden and the Salt Creek side.”
   Space in the first floor of the building that would have been used for lobbies and elevators leading to the second and third floors now will be used for extra retail space. Goldsmith said the village still will receive roughly $100,000 in annual tax revenue from the development.
   Knowing the village will still benefit financially from the development sat well with Commission Chairman Laura LaPlaca.
   “There was some concern just looking at the benefit versus the detriment to the village at making these changes at this time,” LaPlaca said. “I understand the concern of the economics of it. The major economic component to the village is generated by the retail space, and the retail space has been increased.”
   Foxford plans to begin construction on building F this fall and already has potential upscale tenants, according to Goldsmith. Board members Neale Byrnes, Doug Geoga and Lisa Moore voiced concerns regarding who will fill the space.
   “It’s going to be a gateway, so obviously you don’t want empty store fronts,” Moore said.
   Goldsmith urged the commission to have faith in the developer and the village’s name recognition.
   “What’s going to drive the retail here is the pricing,” he said. “The rent is substantial and it’s going to drive the type of tenant.”
   After two hours of discussion, the commission approved Foxford’s changes with a 5-1 vote. The request still must be approved by the full village board.
   This is the second time this year that Foxford has downsized its plans. In April, as a part of a settlement between the village, Foxford and residents named in a lawsuit, Foxford agreed to lower the height of several buildings and cut the number of residential dwellings from 271 to 145. Foxford first approached the village with plans to build The Hinsdale Club in September 2006.






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