JOLIET – Crusader Customs’ plans to customize and sell used cars at its new Jefferson Street location go to the zoning board and plan commission on Thursday.
The City Council in January rejected the plan, suggesting it was not a good location for a custom car business. But attorney Michael Hansen, now representing Crusader Customs, said the business has something to offer the city this time by downzoning the property and agreeing to restrictions on its operation.
“We’re going to downzone the property, which is major,” Hansen said Monday.
The property at 2409 W. Jefferson St. now is zoned for light industrial. Crusader Customs is seeking rezoning to general business.
Crusader Customs moved into the building in February, not needing a special use permit for the retail sales business it is doing now. But it would need a special use permit to customize cars on site and sell used cars.
Hansen said Crusader Customs also has agreed to restrict car sales to the rear of the property. Previously it had planned to display a car out front along Jefferson Street.
The building has been used for automotive part sales since the late 1970s, most recently as a Carquest store, according to a staff report on the plan. The staff report lists 11 conditions that would be placed on the property if a special use permit is granted. They include paving and sealcoating parking areas, installation of a 6-foot high security fence, and a prohibition against rope or strobe lights. Outdoor vehicle sales would be restricted to the rear parking and the back half of the west-side parking area. Crusader Customs was located at 1020 W. Jefferson St. before it moved.
The zoning board will consider the request for a special use permit. The plan commission will consider the zoning. Both panels meet Thursday at city hall. The matter would next go to the City Council for review.