ELBURN – Bill Grabarek said he wants to make clear that he isn’t against development in Elburn. When the Elburn trustee pushed to delay the vote on the Elburn Station plans, he said it was because he wanted serious discussion about making changes to the project.
That process is ready to begin. Elburn Station is on the agenda for the Village Board meeting, which starts at 7 p.m. Monday at Village Hall, 301 E. North St.
Plans for Elburn Station would bring 2,200 homes – including more than 1,300 apartments and condominiums – to the village over the next 20 years, built by Geneva-based developer ShoDeen. Trustees appeared ready to make their vote on the issue in October, but Grabarek instead sought to table the issue. Board members Jeff Walter and David Gualdoni agreed, and the decision was tabled.
At the last meeting of 2012, board member Ethan Hastert asked to have the discussion added to the agenda, saying there were details that could be worked out. Also, he said that village leaders should not pass on the federal funding that would pay for a project that would extend Anderson Road and pay for a bridge to cross the Union Pacific tracks. But that land is owned by ShoDeen, and without an agreement on Elburn Station, it’s unlikely ShoDeen would sell the land needed for the project.
Grabarek said the plan includes too many apartments and rental units, and the village shouldn’t embrace the Elburn Station plans just to get the bridge.
“When I moved to table it, it was – in my view – a way to force more meaningful discussion about the number of apartments,” said Grabarek, adding that such a project is “inconsistent with the way the village is currently constituted.”
“I hope this is a very good, fruitful discussion and debate,” Grabarek said. “I don’t think we’ve really had that yet.”
Grabarek said he has heard from residents who aren’t comfortable with the plan as it stands. He said it’s doubtful the issue will be resolved Monday, but he said he isn’t against all development or against ShoDeen, and a solution can be reached.
“It’s a way to get everybody back to the table,” he said. “It’s not trying to kill it forever.”