Little Friends is now a step closer to moving to its new location.
The Planning and Zoning Commission voted 7 to 1 in favor of rezoning their property to a college/university designation, as petitioned by the site’s buyer – North Central College.
The 3.79-acre site is bounded by School Street, Wright Street, Columbia Street, and Franklin Avenue, and sits just north of North Central’s main campus in the historic district.
The spot was identified for future growth in the college’s Master Land Use Plan 2010-2020, but exact development plans are not yet in place.
No Future Plans
This led Commissioner Andrew Margulies to disagree with the rezoning.
“If it’s a college facility, what if it’s a parking deck? What if it’s something that doesn’t necessarily work with the surrounding areas? I have no problems with the university taking over that land, I think that makes total sense. But not knowing what’s going to go there, that’s what I have an issue with,” said Margulies.
Approval Goes Through
However, the rest of the group agreed with the new designation.
“So a lot of the times we get developers coming to us wanting to approve a zoning and we don’t know what their plans or their intentions are,” said Commissioner Chair Kamala Martinez. “However, because there’s historical record with both organizations – both with Little Friends and with North Central – I am very confident that you guys will work with the residents and do what’s right for our community and for our residents.”
Next for Little Friends
The sale will go through in January 2020.
Little Friends plans to move into a more up-to-date facility on Diehl Road and Mill Street by June of that same year.
The commission also approved Soma Sage Health and Healing, a massage establishment that will come to 1112 S. Washington Street.
Naperville News 17’s Christine Lena reports.
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