Getting your Evanston news from Facebook? Try the Evanston RoundTable’s free daily and weekend email newsletters – sign up now!

It appears that plans to develop a specialty food market at

Oakton Street

and

Asbury Avenue

are off the table.

Last year Farmers Best, owned by three brothers, proposed to open a new store at the site formerly occupied by an Osco Drug store at

Oakton Street

and

Asbury Avenue

; the site is now owned by CVS. In order to assist with redevelopment expenses, the City agreed to enter into a sales tax revenue sharing agreement with Farmers Best, capped at $500,000. Subsequently, two of the brothers opted out of the development, and they were replaced by another investor. The City agreed to share sales tax revenues with the new venture up to $1 million. The new venture was required, however, to obtain financing and move forward with the project on a set timeline.

 

Dennis Marino, the City’s interim director of community development, said the developers “failed to commit to construction within [the time set by the City], and [City staff] did not feel confident to recommend to City Council that the agreement be extended.”

 

Mr. Marino said, though, that Community Development staff would continue to work with elected officials and neighborhood residents to try to find a suitable tenant for the property. “That location is very important to the neighborhood,” he said. “It’s now a question of ‘What’s next?’”