The New Lenox Village Board has approved a large-scale self-storage facility campus after the developers were able to make changes to their plans to assuage residents’ concerns.
Village trustees and Mayor Tim Baldermann unanimously approved two measures for Blue Ribbon Self Storage II, which included an ordinance approving a special use permit for the proposed facility at the northeast corner of Gougar Road and Haven Avenue during a Jan. 9 meeting.
Along with the 111,810-square-foot climate-controlled self-storage facility, Blue Ribbon Management plans to build two almost 11,000-square-foot RV unit storage buildings on the 11-acre vacant field.
Since the proposal does not fit into the acceptable zoned uses for the property in question, the company had to apply for a special use permit. This allowed the village greater control over the proposal. As such, the village was able to get Blue Ribbon to make some changes to address concerns raised in previous planning commission and village board meetings by a number of residents from the Fieldstone and Grand Prairie subdivisions, which border the property on the east.
One of the principal changes was including a provision in the ordinance that the company would never build on the three acres of the property closest to the homes. Another change was agreeing to all-natural landscaping – including a higher berm and lots of trees – in lieu of partial fencing, as the buffer between the facility and the residents’ homes.
During the discussion prior to the vote, Blue Ribbon Vice President Michael Kelly also agreed to give residents input into which trees would be planted.
“I really believe the potential developers here have gone out of their way to be good neighbors,” Baldermann said.
The company has also submitted new information about impact on crime activity and property values, as residents had requested at the board’s last meeting in December, Assistant Village Administrator Robin Ellis said.
Property values of the homes near the company’s facilities in Yorkville, Midlothian and Bourbonnais increased 8 percent to 13 percent in 2016 and 2017, Ellis said. As for crime, a review of the company’s similar facilities in Orland Park and Mokena showed no criminal activity took place at those locations in all of 2018, Kelly said. Blue Ribbon also had previously provided the village with a traffic study showing self-storage facilities tend to generate less traffic than other businesses.