City Council voted to give Gordon Foods up to $100,000 to be used toward soil remediation at the site of their proposed new store at 2424 Oakton St.
The costs of soil remediation, necessary because of “poor foundational support of the earth on the site” and contaminated soil removal will be shared equally by the City, Gordon Foods and the current property owner.
Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, called Gordon Foods the “most important” economic development project outside of downtown in quite some time.
Located almost directly across the street from the brand new Aldi food store and next to the new Shell station development, the staff memo reported that, according to Gordon’s estimates, a new Gordon Foods store will result in 35 new jobs (but only five-to-seven full-time-equivalent jobs), between $5,000 and $10,500 in annual new sales taxes, and $80,000 to $100,000 in new property tax generation.
The proposal was removed from the consent agenda for discussion by Alderman Don Wilson, 4th Ward, because of a concern that nothing in the proposal required Gordon Foods to actually build its store after completing the soil remediation project. “Is this based on Gordon Foods going forward and building this store?” asked Ald. Rainey.
“No,” replied Steve Griffin, the City’s director of community and economic development. The City needs to draft a letter agreement in any event, he said.
Alderman Jane Grover, 7th Ward, asked whether Gordon Foods had in fact purchased the property. Again, the answer was no. The company awaits approval from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, said. Mr. Griffin.