A deal to bring Trader Joe’s to Evanston moved forward Monday when the city council voted to spend $2.05 million for two properties adjacent to the store’s planned location on Chicago Avenue.
According to Triblocal Evanston, aldermen voted to spend $2.05 million from the city’s parking fund to purchase the two properties just north of 1211 Chicago Ave., where Trader Joe’s plans to open next year. The city plans to build an 18,000-square foot, 78-space parking lot on the site, and hopes to generate enough revenue in taxes from the store to offset the purchase price within five years, Triblocal reports.
Trader Joe’s is expected to open in the spring of 2013, just up the street from Jewel-Osco and Whole Foods Evanston South—a location that has drawn some criticism.
Fourth Ward alderman Don Wilson, who was the only member of the council to vote against the entire project, cited some concerns about being fair to other businesses as the justification for his opposition, according to Triblocal.
“It probably makes sense from a return on investment perspective,” he told Triblocal. “But the tougher point is, how do you look the other business in the eye? You’ve got somebody next door—you didn’t buy their parking for them.”
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