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  • Megann Horstead

Cooper's Hawk, Pete’s Fresh Market in the works for New Lenox


The Village of New Lenox could have a deal to bring on line Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant, Pete’s Fresh Market and another retailer to the northwest corner of the intersection joining Route 30 and Vancina Lane, if negotiations with the developer, JD Real Estate, hold up.

Officials will consider opting into a cost-sharing agreement with JD Real Estate, as well as approving a purchase contract with Cooper’s Hawk at their Nov. 27 meeting.

“They are contracts for us to continue working on the site through due diligence for the property joining Route 30 and Vancina Lane,” Mayor Tim Baldermann said in a phone interview.

Board action will provide the Village with the consent to move forward with performing soil checks and drawing a preliminary site plan for the three-building retail development, so as to ensure the property has adequate space. The site in question is currently owned by InSite.

“JD Real Estate and Pete’s Fresh Market are buying the entire 9.5 acres,” Baldermann said. “The Village is working with Pete’s Fresh Market, and is going to get the site ready [for Cooper’s Hawk.] We’ll buy a little more than two acres from JD Real Estate, and then Cooper’s Hawk will buy the two-plus acres from the Village.”

The Village will allot $4.5 million toward the initial purchase of land and site-ready preparation, with the understanding that $2.2 million will be paid out by Cooper’s Hawk in return. Pete’s Fresh Market will handle the construction of its site.

“I’m anticipating after we buy that portion [of land,] it’ll generate $450,000 annually in sales tax through five or six years,” Baldermann said. “The Village will get all of its money back and have created numerous jobs, plus additional income from people coming into town. It’s a good investment. People have been asking for a market like Pete’s Fresh Market and a restaurant like Cooper’s Hawk. This is exciting.”

Baldermann stressed that closing in on the deal will rely, in part, on making sure the plan is appealing to all parties involved to move forward and said towns, like New Lenox, have noted over time that public-private partnerships are key to bringing on line new developments.

“This is really something different,” Baldermann said. “We have other grocery stores in town. The last 10 years we’ve provided residents with a number of options. Pete’s Fresh Market is a different type of grocery store in town, so that’s something people will like. Cooper’s Hawk has to be the most requested restaurant in the Lincoln-Way area. We’ve got other restaurants, but Cooper’s Hawk is something different. When other people look to come in to a community, they look to see what’s there. When you have a development of Cooper’s Hawk and Pete’s Fresh Market’s caliber, you know you have residents who support local business, and it’s a great opportunity.”

If all goes according to the plan, the Village is eying an approximate 60,000-square-foot Pete’s Fresh Market, a 12,000-square-foot Cooper’s Hawk and another 15,000-square-foot building, whose tenant has not yet been confirmed by New Lenox officials.

Negotiations are anticipated to close as early as January or February of 2018. With the construction of Cooper’s Hawk slated for the spring of 2018 and Pete’s Fresh Market in late 2018, that means people can expect the two businesses to open up by the spring of 2019 and 2020, respectively.

#NewLenox #business

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