Residents want Sunstar redevelopment to be pedestrian-friendly, include unique stores


Residents are looking for the redevelopment of a 9.2-acre industrial site at 4635-67 W. Foster Ave. to be pedestrian-friendly and to feature some businesses which are unique to the area.

That was the consensus of the 60 people who gave input on the site’s redevelopment during the Feb. 1 meeting of the North Mayfair Improvement Association. “Not just a coffee store, but a locally owned coffee store,” association president Jim O’Reilly said.

Several residents called for a development to be designed in a manner in which pedestrians can easily maneuver throughout the complex instead of having to drive from one place to another.

Other recommendations included a multi-purpose community center or entertainment venue which would offer activities for all ages, an outdoor plaza, casual dining restaurants, a Trader Joe’s grocery store and senior housing.

Several residents also said that a stoplight may be needed on Foster in front of the site to accommodate vehicles entering and leaving the site.

O’Reilly said that the site’s developer, the Chicago-based Jaffee Companies, has given no indication if the project would be retail, residential or mixed-use but that one company official told him that “the intent is to make some thing that is representative of what the community wants.”

Association vice president Lynn Burmeister said that association will be presenting a summary of the recommendations made at the meeting to the developer and Alderman Margaret Laurino (39th).

The site was once home to dental product manufacturer Sunstar Americas, which recently relocated to Schaumburg. The former plant on Foster was demolished last year.

The east end of the site backs up to the planned Weber Spur bike trail. The trail, which is being built along a former railroad right of way, will start near Cicero and Sunnyside avenues and extend northeast into Lincolnwood.

Some residents suggested that the project include green space next to the trail and that a bike shop and bicycle rental service would be appropriate for the site given the expected popularity of the trail.