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Local News

1-year free rent proposed for MyGrain Brewing

A large brewing tanks makes beer Sept. 6, 2017, at MyGrain Brewing in downtown Joliet.
A large brewing tanks makes beer Sept. 6, 2017, at MyGrain Brewing in downtown Joliet.

MyGrain Brewing Company would get a year rent-free under proposed amendments to the brewpub’s lease at city-owned Union Station.

Other changes in the lease would relieve the company of unexpectedly high property tax bills that city officials say are the result of the terms of the original lease.

The year of free rent is aimed at relieving the brewpub from the impact of downtown construction that will run through fall 2020, according to a staff memo on the proposal. The rent relief would be back-dated to September and continue through August 2020.

The lease amendments will be reviewed by the Joliet City Council Economic Development Committee on Tuesday.

MyGrain operates on lease arrangement that already provides rent credits based on the company’s investment in renovating its space to open the brewpub in September 2017.

According to a staff memo on the proposed lease amendments, MyGrain invested $2.5 million in renovations at the former train station.

The upcoming year is expected to be bad for business because of a Chicago Street extension project that will include closing the main public parking lot available to MyGrain during the course of construction.

Construction of a new bus station nearby also is expected to start in spring 2020 and will limit access to MyGrain from an alternative parking lot, according to the staff memo.

Greg Lesiak, partner at MyGrain, said business has already been hurt by the extended construction on Jefferson Street downtown.

“We do understand that these things need to be done,” Lesiak said. “Next year is the worst year because the parking lot is being taken out.”

Lesiak also said he was not expecting the $17,998 property tax bill that MyGrain received as the space was converted to private use.

According to the staff memo, the bill “was significantly higher than expected” but was based on terms of MyGrain’s lease agreement with the city providing for higher property taxes in the front years of the 10-year lease.

The lease is being rewritten into a two-year rolling lease that will flatten out the property tax payments for MyGrain.

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