Creative Thinking for Creative Development

By: Laura Gibbs
By: Laura Gibbs

It won't take long. The village of Machesney Park is carefully plotting out their every move. This is the 18 acre piece of land that will most likely be home to a big box store and other small retail stores. Back in the 90's, Machesney Park started their first TIF district and this piece of land is bounded by Orlando, Alpine, Storybrook and 173. It's all within the second quadrant of the tax increment finance district.

Mayor Linda Vaughn says, "We've purchased all but 3 lots and by next summer will demolish buildings and go out for development requests to see what would be appropriate for the area."

But if it wasn't for this tax-free opportunity some question if this area would ever be developed?

Mark Sorrentino who is a Machesney Park District 5 Trustee and he says, "It wouldn't of occurred in an organized design manor where we can maximize sales tax dollars and real estate taxes potentially."

The southeast quadrant of Machesney Park tends to grow from west to east but with a new interchange at I-90 and 173. Mayor Linda Vaughn expects just as much growth from east to west. Just recently IDOT gave their approval to begin construction on interchange next spring. That will also mean parts of 173 will go from 2 lanes to four. It's a stretch that's expected to see a lot of new traffic.

Sorrentino says, "That's why it's important at the westward gateway that we do it right and start on a good foot."

And in order to continue to work towards getting everything larger communities already have Mayor Vaughn says the village is in desperate need of a grocery store and pharmacy. What's being called TIF II is going to take shape along North Second Street from 173 to Windsor Road. The state still needs to approve of the TIF II district.


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