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Local News

More apartments approved at Joliet's Barber Building

Plan for indoor parking on main floor scrapped; TIF extension is discussed

The Barber Building in downtown Joliet has been converted into apartments and is fully leased, according to a city official.
The Barber Building in downtown Joliet has been converted into apartments and is fully leased, according to a city official.

The developer of the Barber Building will add four more apartments.

The Joliet City Council last week approved a change in plans that originally called for indoor parking in the former office building on Chicago Street.

Developer Michael Petry has converted the downtown building to 35 apartments, all of which have been leased.

The council approved a change in the special use permit for the project to allow space originally set aside for indoor parking to be used for four more apartments.

Parking was originally planned for the back portion of the main floor at 66-68 N. Chicago St., but Petry “has since determined that this project was not feasible,” a staff report stated.

The apartment project includes the five-story Barber Building and the neighboring three-story building at 72-76 N. Chicago St.

The council approved the change in plans without comment.

The council’s Economic Development Committee and the city zoning board previously approved the change.

The remainder of the main floor will continue to be commercial space.

Joliet is encouraging the development of residential space downtown in hopes that more people living downtown will lead to the opening of more stores, offices and restaurants.

Downtown TIF

The Barber Building is one of a number of projects that has been done with the help of city incentives aimed at fostering redevelopment downtown.

The city is in the process of extending a downtown tax increment financing district scheduled to expire in 2023. The TIF incentive allows property tax dollars to be used to offset the cost of redevelopment.

No one spoke Tuesday at a public hearing for the extension of the TIF district to 2035.

The council will vote on the TIF extension at a later date.

Interim City Manager Steve Jones said the state legislature first must approve an extension of the life of a TIF district. State approval could come in the fall session.

The downtown TIF was created in 2000. Its boundaries have been changed twice – once in 2007 and again in 2017.

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