644 Madison St.

Plans to rip down most of a historic auto dealership on Madison Street might be changing at the request of local preservationists.

For months, Aldi has been eyeing a long-vacant former Packard dealership at 644 Madison St., which was built in the 1920s and designed by noted architect E.E. Roberts. Their early plan involved tearing down most of the property and preserving the façade, similar to what Walgreens did at the corner of Madison and Oak Park Avenue.

The idea was received warmly by business leaders on the street, while the Historic Preservation Commission expressed concerns last month, believing that too little of the structure is being saved.

The commission met with representatives from Aldi at the Packard building on Nov. 9. After the get-together, Aldi was expected to go back to the drawing board and return with a revised plan that preserves more of the property, according to Doug Kaarre, urban planner for the village.

He expects they’ll receive a revised proposal some time in December, which the preservation commission will meet to discuss.

Representatives from Aldi could not be reached for comment on Monday, and the Batavia-based chain declined to comment earlier this month.

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