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Local News

Crusader Customs moves to disputed Jefferson Street location

Crusader Customs on Monday moved into the former Carquest auto parts store at 2409 W. Jefferson St.
Crusader Customs on Monday moved into the former Carquest auto parts store at 2409 W. Jefferson St.

JOLIET – Crusader Customs has moved to the West Jefferson Street spot where it was denied a special use permit for installation and used-car sales.

Crusader Customs, which sells wheel rims and car accessories, for now will only do retail sales in the new location at 2409 W. Jefferson St., City Planner Jim Torri said.

But Crusader Customs plans to come back again in March with a rezoning and special use permit request that would allow for installation services and limited used-car sales, Torri said.

Torri said the business already has the zoning needed for retail sales.

“That is what, at a minimum, he plans to do,” Torri said.

Crusader Customs moved Monday to the new location from its previous spot at 1020 W. Jefferson St.

“I’m still working with the city,” owner Albert Koplinski said Wednesday, declining to discuss details of the move.

Koplinski previously said he wanted to move to the larger location to expand his business.

The location is a former Carquest auto parts store, but it also has a large garage area in the back that would provide space for installations.

The City Council in January turned down the special use permit with some members questioning whether a rim shop would be appropriate for the location.

Some council members have said they want to improve the Jefferson Street retail area that borders Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center. The council in December also turned down a license sought to open a liquor store at 2155 W. Jefferson St.

Then last week, the council voted to allow a billboard to stay at
2323 W. Jefferson, despite staff recommendation that it come down because it did not conform with city standards.

Staff had recommended approval of the Crusader Customs permit.

Torri said Crusader Customs will go to the city zoning board and plan commission in March for preliminary approval of new business zoning for the property along with a special use permit. The matter would likely go to the council for consideration in April, he said.

Torri said the property now has a zoning for light industrial use that allows retail sales. Crusader Customs will seek new business zoning for the property as it applies again for the special use permit, he said.

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