Work has begun on the village's most massive mixed-use development, which means village-owned parking lots near Lake and Harlem will soon shut down.
Oak Park Mayor Anan Abu-Taleb, developers and village officials held a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday morning to kick off the project, which will include 271 luxury apartments, 26,000 square feet of retail space and a five-story parking garage.
Construction crews already have begun demolishing a portion of 1118 Westgate Street and ComEd, Nicor Gas and AT&T will begin relocating services in anticipation of the massive construction project.
The parking lots south of Lake Street will close in mid-November, and full-scale construction will start in mid-December, according to Tammie Grossman, director of development customer services. Shoppers and those visiting downtown can park in the village's Holley Court Garage at Lake and Harlem.
The project, which is bounded by Marion Street, Harlem Avenue, Lake Street and North Boulevard, will include a five-story building facing Lake Street and a 20-story building facing North Boulevard.
Abu-Taleb said the development is expected to bring 500 new residents to the village and approximately $25 million to the local property tax base.
"Projects of this size can go a long way toward relieving the property tax burden on our residents," he said at the ceremony.
The project is expected to be substantially completed by March 2017, according to a news release.
The village has invested $7 million, which includes the land value, in the $85 million project.
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