Dormant Libertyville driving range site to be sold, developed as warehouse/industrial buildings
After nearly four years and five contract changes, the dormant driving range and golf learning center at the former Libertyville Sports Complex is about to be sold for development of two warehouse/industrial buildings.
The expected authorization Tuesday by the village board will allow the sale of those facilities and parking, totaling about 19 acres, to Midwest Industrial Funds Inc. to go forward for the Libertyville 45 Corporate Center.
A price is not specified in the resolution approving the sale, but the terms call for it to be at least 80% of the appraised value, which has been set at about $3.9 million.
The properties at Peterson Road and Route 45 long had been a financial drain on the village and were declared as surplus to allow them to be sold. The initial sales contract was inked in June 2018 but has been amended five times due to unforeseen circumstances.
Initially, the sale was to have included the most visible piece -- the Aloha Falls miniature golf course at the northeast corner of the property -- to be developed as a gas station by another party.
Due to access issues, that idea was dropped, leaving Oak Brook-based Midwest Industrial alone as a developer. The village will sell and review any proposals for the corner property separately.
Mini-golf was one of three components of the former sports complex. The main portion is the cavernous indoor facility, which held its own financially and was not offered for sale.
That facility now is being operated by Canlan Sports USA Corp. under a two-year lease and assuming the risk for any profit or loss. Canlan pays $20,000 each month for rent and has an option to buy the building within another year for $3.75 million.
Getting out of the sports complex business has become a priority in Libertyville as the village has been transferring about $1 million a year to cover outstanding debt for the overall complex, which opened in 2002. Proceeds from the pending sale to Midwest Industrial will be used to pay down the debt, village officials have said.
Midwest Industrial plans to erect two buildings totaling 334,130 square feet south of the indoor sports complex. They are being built on speculation with the size and number of tenants to be determined.
The property is zoned for office, manufacturing and distribution parks. Midwest's proposal faced questions regarding potential air pollution, flooding and truck traffic during several hours of public presentations and discussions before the advisory plan commission and village board.
The plan commission recommended approval by a 4-3 vote. The village board unanimously accepted those findings and on April 12 officially approved the ordinances allowing the project to proceed.
The sale is expected to close in coming weeks. Midwest then will submit construction drawings for building and engineering permits. Once reviewed and approved, permits will be issued to allow demolition of the driving range and mini-golf structures, grading, stormwater/utility work and construction.
Midwest Industrial officials previously said construction will take about nine months with an opening later this year or early 2023.
The company is "ready to get moving and have contractors and materials already lined up," said Heather Rowe, the village's economic development manager.