A four-story building containing a mix of retail stores and rental apartments in the Ravinia area was proposed by developers to the Highland Park City Council today during its Committee of the Whole meeting.
Located at the northwest corner of Roger Williams Avenue and the Union Pacific Railroad tracks, the proposed building will house more than 6,000 square feet of retail space and 30 rental apartments containing 58 bedrooms, according to a presentation by Linda Sloan of the City’s planning department.
The building which will be demolished currently houses some retail space and a vacant area which was once home to a White Hen Pantry.
With several other projects being discussed for the Ravinia neighborhood including an overall beatification the business district with a special service area, Council Member Alyssa Knobel does not want projects like this considered in a vacuum. “We have to take all the Ravinia projects and look at them in a holistic approach,” she said.
Sloan assured Knoble and her colleagues that was being done. “Everything the City has been engaged in is done in account of what else is going on,” Sloan said. “We don’t have the capacity to do it all at once. Everything is in accordance with the master plan.”
Needing both zoning variances and approval as a planned unit development, Mayor Nancy Rotering and the Council members directed Sloan to approach both requests at the same time. Sloan said the process could take six to nine months.
Council Discusses Theater, Renaissance Place
Before the discussion of the Ravinia project, Shabbra Govina of the community development department reiterated for the public information contained in a memorandum about the Highland Park Theater and expressed hope the number of potential bidders could be narrowed next month.
During the Council’s scheduled meeting, it started a process to give Renaissance Place property tax relief to help it cope with a current 40 percent vacancy.
Patch will have more detailed stories on these issues and more over the next week.