Church annexation key to future Route 59 growth, Naperville officials say

Two property owners seeking annexation into Naperville could open the gate for more commercial development along Route 59.

The land is just south of 79th Street and includes World Mission Society Church of God at 29W771 79th St. and three parcels that include three single-family houses.

Best Buy Carpet and Granite Tops, 585 S. Route 59, Aurora, owns the land and houses and has wanted to annex it into Naperville to build a new store and other development for at least a year. It was stymied by the church, which is next to the city boundary, because church officials did not want to pay for the cost of hooking up to city water and sewer services. Since then, the business has offered the church financial incentives to make the annexation more affordable, church office manager Chris Cha said.

“Us not wanting to incorporate then was a financial decision,” Cha said. “We now welcome the opportunity to become part of the city. The benefits far outweigh the cost convenience-wise.”

Mayor Steve Chirico said future city annexation of other land along Route 59 hinges on the deal.

“This will probably be a catalyst for the rest of the properties (along Route 59) as they will now have opportunity, if they so choose, to apply to annex into Naperville,” Chirico said.

“Any time we can increase that commercial tax base, it takes pressure off our residents. Our residents pay for about 80 percent of the cost of government in Naperville, and we’ve been heading in the right direction in the past few years, but we still need to push that number down and the commercial number up.”

Rezoning and variance requests for all of the properties will be discussed Wednesday night by the Naperville Planning and Zoning Commission before going to the Naperville City Council for approval. In addition to the zoning change from residential to commercial, there are also requests to adjust setbacks and to allow a drive-thru window for one of the parcels. The church would be allowed to continue as a nonconforming use.

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