Despite an unprecedented side agreement to hold Fresh Thyme Farmers Market and Cadwell Corners to the requirements of their special use permit to open a grocery store, some area homeowners fear that is not enough after a first reading of the law at Monday’s Village Board of Trustees meeting.
Among other things, the ordinance and agreement set forth the store’s hours of operation, limit delivery times, dictates where early arriving trucks must wait and establishes landscaping requirements to soften the effect of the new business on the adjoining residential neighborhood.
Despite the provisions—the Village has never used a side agreement before—which can include a revocation of the special use permit, homeowners worry the penalties are not sufficient and the Village won’t act once the store is open.
“The Village is never going to pull the permit,” Deer Run Homeowners Association Jeff Bizar said. “If on the 10th violation they (the Village) tell them they will pull it on the next one that’s enforcement. What has to happen for the Village to pull the permit?”
Village Manager Kent Street is not willing to speculate what kind of violation would result in a forfeiture. “We would have to take a look at the ordinance and the side agreement,” he said. “We would rely on the review of counsel for the grounds that could lead to that.”
Not long before Monday’s meeting, Cadwell Corners’ ownership planted trees between the back of the Fresh Thyme location and the adjoining homes which are designed in part to help muffle sounds from the store along with a new fence.
Mayor Harriet Rosenthal specifically called shopping center owner Jim Devine to the podium to explain what was being done to help improve the relationship between the homeowners and Cadwell Corners.
“There is real bad history between the center and its neighbors and we want to make sure they are (considered),” Rosenthal said. “We are going to be very vigilant on this.”
Devine explained the new fence will be an improvement over the old one. “It will be double sided wood,” he said. “It will be much more sound absorbent than the existing fence.” When Rosenthal asked the height he could not answer.
Bizar was also concerned the number of trees planted are not enough. “They’re at least 15 feet apart,” he said. “How are they going to do anything?” Devine indicated there were natural restrictions on when trees could be planted and said there may be more to come.
Street did make it clear the homeowners would be kept in the communication loop and have an avenue to deal with problems. “We’re going to put some structure in it,” he said referring to the reporting requirements of the agreement and ordinance.
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