Sterling Bay spec warehouse plan nixed over traffic, environmental concerns

The prolific Chicago developer was seeking a height variance on a suburban property near a forest preserve

City officials rejected Sterling Bay’s bid to build a spec warehouse in Darien over traffic and environmental concerns.

The prolific Chicago developer wanted a height variance to build the 153,000-square-foot facility with 31 truck bays on a 10-acre property on the South Side of Interstate 55 just east of Cass Avenue where zoning allows structures as tall as 35 feet, according to The Doings, a suburban weekly newspaper.

Sterling Bay wanted the variance to build a 39-foot-tall warehouse, saying industrial tenants need the taller ceilings to accommodate their equipment.

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City officials rejected the request this week in light of residents’ opposition to it. Some 2,500 people signed a petition opposing it, worried about truck traffic and how the facility could affect the 2,500-acre Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve next door.

Sterling Bay spokeswoman Sarah Hamilton said the company is looking at the council¹s recommendations and will make adjustments as needed.

The developer has been a prolific in Fulton Market, and has plans for the massive 70-acre Lincoln Yards development along the North Branch of the Chicago River.

In the past year it has spent some $1.5 billion acquiring high-profile office properties Downtown, and has continued to pursue more acquisitions in the past few weeks. [The Doings] — John O’Brien

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