Carvana must halt Skokie tower after state suspends dealer’s license

Village halted construction in light of state suspending the company’s license

Michael Lorge and 9800 block of Woods Drive in Skokie (Carvana, skokie4th.org, Google Maps)
Michael Lorge and 9800 block of Woods Drive in Skokie (Carvana, skokie4th.org, Google Maps)

Carvana, the decade-old used car dealer that said last week that it would lay off thousands of workers, hit a roadblock in its plans to build a signature glass-curtained car vending tower in Illinois.

The village of Skokie, which approved the building on Feb. 22, told Carvana in a letter this week to stop any work on the site until it resolves a state decision to suspend its dealer’s license because it misused out-of-state temporary registration permits and failed to transfer titles, the Chicago Tribune reported. Carvana hasn’t yet broken ground on the 14-story building on the 9800 block of Woods Drive, adjacent to Harms Woods nature preserve,

“We instruct that you do not proceed with any work on the site and that you make no further submissions or have any further contact with the Village of Skokie Building Department until such time as I inform you that you may contact the Department again,” Skokie Corporation Counsel Michael Lorge wrote.

The suspension is a relief for local residents opposed to the tower, some of whom said it would become a “killing machine” for birds. Others raised concern about potential noise and traffic headaches. The Village Board’s vote cleared the way for the building in a district zoned for office research.

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The state’s order bars Carvana from selling vehicles in Illinois, although those that have already been sold can still be delivered.

In the letter, Lorge said the village determined that Carvana would be in violation of its code if the project moved forward after the state’s order.

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[CT] — Victoria Pruitt