THE LAST GAPPING hole left after Braidwood’s historic down town was demolished has finally been agreed upon to be filled. A completely new Family Dollar store will be constructed upon the site, offering residents additional shopping experiences and creating new property and sales taxes for the city.
by Tonya Michalec Staff writer
City-owned property that has sat vacant on Braidwood's Main Street for four years will soon become a new outlet for a national retailer.
Mayor Bill Rulien announced during the June 10 city council meeting that he was happy to say that a new retail store will be coming to Braidwood's Main Street.
Rulien pointed out that the new business will be replacing the last empty space left behind after the city's former historic buildings were demolished in 2010. He noted that a poorly navigated real estate strategy carried out by the former administration ended up costing taxpayers over $3.1 million, closing the doors of numerous small town businesses and leaving empty lots in the city's main corridor.
"Our Main Street will no longer have an empty spot. Filling the gap will be a brand new, free-standing Family Dollar Store," Rulien announced.
The mayor said the city entered into an agreement with the Family Dollar Corporation in May. The agreement includes SMR Acquisition Company LLC, the preferred developer for Family Dollar Stores, which is seeking variances in parking lot size and landscaping requirements in order to construct the new store.
The city will be selling Family Dollar five lots just west of the present Casey's General Store for $138,000. The terms include that the city invest up to $10,000 to make the lots buildable.
According to the mayor, the developer needs additional soil brought in to provide more of a solid footing for the foundation. Also, the city will pay $8,000 towards the paving of the finished project. Ultimately, these two stipulations lower the purchase price to $120,000.
The agreement does not spell out a specific time table for the construction of the new retail store. Rulien believes that the process should begin fairly soon for multiple reasons.
"They have already spent considerable funds for the future site for surveys, attorneys and soil borings, so I don't think they will waste any time before beginning to build," Rulien said.
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