City of Joliet Mayor Bob O’Dekirk has had enough of the rumors that Joliet is going to take the NorthPoint project, which has been largely perpetuated by proponents of the project. The threat is that of Joliet annexing additional land that is currently unincorporated territory that would be under the control of Elwood/Manhattan. Officials and proponents of the NorthPoint project allege that Joliet might wait out the boundary agreements, annex the land, and take over the project.
We have consistently and ardently refuted that this is a concern. The reality is that it is a distraction from the obvious: with this fear in mind, Elwood is free to take over the project and “save” us all from the big, bad wolf that Joliet is made out to be.
Here are some of our reasons why we believe that Joliet will not “take” this project:
- Joliet does not have the sewer/water capacity to take on a project of this size and scope.
- The project is dependent upon the bridge that would connect Compass Business Park to Centerpoint (which gives access to I55) and the rail. Without it, the project is not only not profitable for NorthPoint Development, its investors, and its future tenants, but it simply won’t work. NorthPoint Development’s Patrick Robinson even asserted this fact on multiple occasions.
- The bridge will be under the sole control of the Village of Elwood – it’s already within the village limits. No other municipality can try and “take” it, including Joliet. This means that no matter what, Elwood has to be involved.
- NorthPoint Development has a history of only working with one community – there are even reports of pitting other communities against each other, similar to what we’ve experienced here. More municipalities involved mean more hoops for NorthPoint to jump through, which means more time and more money.
- Elwood is willing to give NorthPoint Development concessions that other municipalities wouldn’t. It’s frankly a bad deal.
Hear Bob O’Dekirk’s comments from the February 20, 2018 City Council meeting:
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This was also reported on by the Joliet Herald News. The article very closely echoes O’Dekirk’s sentiments from the meeting.