Leisure Centre, more apartments on offer for Villa Park

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Villa Park is reviewing plans for a new recreation center at Lions Park and the redevelopment of a neighboring property.

The village plans to build a 38,000 square foot recreation center at Lions Park, 350 E. Wildwood Ave. Meanwhile, a developer has unveiled a proposed mixed-use residential and commercial complex along Villa Avenue.

Last week Villa Park directors heard two informal presentations about the two projects.

Villa Park is seeking to build a recreation center with a $10 million grant the village received from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The grant stipulates a two-year timeline from March 2022 for the project to begin construction and reach completion.

Itasca-based Williams Architects is working on the design of the Lions Park Recreation Center.

Williams Architects CEO Tom Poulos told village administrators that the two-story facility will include 16,500 square feet for a gymnasium on the ground floor and a walking/running track on the second level.

The building would also have rooms focused on group fitness and a space dedicated to “Creative Kids”. In addition, it would include a kitchen area for special occasions with caterer.

Poulos pointed out that the exact positioning of the leisure center in Lions Park could change if Villa Park wants to have land available to build a future outdoor aquatic center, which was not part of its presentation. He said the recreation center locker rooms at the north end of the building could serve a dual purpose for a possible outdoor pool.

Construction of the Lions Park Recreation Center is estimated at over $18.1 million.

Meanwhile, Wisconsin-based developer Catalyst Partners has proposed a $50 million high-density, mixed-use housing and retail complex at 100-110 S. Villa Ave. The property is the former site of AK Mulch and Firewood, which moved to 631 E. Wildwood Avenue.

The development, called “The Union”, would include a four-story building that would feature 210 market-priced one and two-bedroom apartments with 10,000 square feet of commercial retail or restaurant space on the ground floor. pavement.

David Lyon of Catalyst Partners said the building would have a parking structure with 100 spaces dedicated to visiting buyers. The overall design would reflect the region’s history as a link for railways, he said.

There are also plans for a $25 million senior living facility for adults 55 and older.

The building would be on the east side of Lions Park, adjacent to the Recreation Center. It would include 90 one- and two-bedroom apartments and a parking structure with dedicated spaces for recreation center visitors.

Villa Park administrator Jack Corkery expressed dismay at the loss of open green space at Lions Park, as the eastern part of the property would include either surface-level parking or the residence building for the elderly. But village chairman Nick Cuzzone suggested the senior living center would help generate tax revenue compared to dedicated parking.

Village Superintendent Richard Keehner, Jr. said there will be community input meetings for both projects.

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