Developer Explains Major Plans For Saugatuck Township Development Effort
A developer from Riverside, Illinois has conceded he is seeking “major” retail chains as tenants to occupy commercial space near Blue Star Highway and 64th Street, across the road from Burger King and adjacent to Lakeshore Outfitters in Saugatuck Township, as part of a preliminary process in a property purchase.
One of those users may well be McDonald’s or Walgreen’s Drug Store or both, Rob Joon, who partially owns the property, told Observer Newspapers on Tuesday.
Asked to confirm whether those retailers were part of the plans, developer Mike Melaniphy said, “We have contacted major users, but at this point we don’t have any corporate approval from anyone.”
Without naming any specific retailers, Melaniphy said those he has contacted include banks, fast food franchises, and drug stores as a possibility.
“It’s so preliminary at this point,” he said, adding that he is in the process of purchasing the property from Joon and is currently seeking a partnership.
“We do need tenants in order to even close on the property,” said Melaniphy.
Joon said he co-owns property consisting of 8½ acres, of which 6½ acres is commercial and three acres fronting the 64th Street and Blue Star Highway near the stop light are on the table for sale.
“We like the property,” said Melaniphy. “It’s (a location) that goes into Saugatuck and we feel there is a need for retail development there.”
Of the property, Joon said, “It’s a highly desirable commercial piece of property. It is very close to the interstate (I-196, at exit 41) and has an excellent access through the stop light on 64th Street.”
Of the possible development itself, Joon said, “My partners and I have nothing to do with the development. They (the developer) approached us about selling the property.”
Melaniphy said that if he finds tenants and closes on the property, he will go through all the proper channels to get appropriate local approval for any proposed plans.
“We think that the community would benefit from what we are trying to do here,” he said.