Woodridge experienced positive developments in the commercial and retail sectors during 2014. In the spring, Art Van Furniture officially opened its 68,000-square-foot store located at the northwest corner of Boughton Road and Woodward Avenue. The Village also became home to Hobby Lobby, which located in the former Sports Authority storefront at the Centerpointe Shopping Center.
Several restaurants undertook remodeling projects, which included Wendy’s, Woodridge Caffe and Clara’s Restaurant. Clara’s Restaurant built a second addition to building after only one year of operating at its new location in Seven Bridges.
“Woodridge is experiencing significant new retail and industrial development again following the recession,” said Community Development Director Michael Mays. “Since 2007, the community saw a net gain of approximately 68,800 square feet of retail.”
Industrial Vacancy Rates decrease
There was renewed strength in the industrial sector as well. Towards the end of last year, Woodridge reported a 4.9% vacancy rate in industrial space. This rate is down from a 6.0% vacancy rate in 2013. In addition, Phase 2 of the Union Pointe Business Park construction was completed, which included the construction of a 353,278 square foot building built-to-suit the Orbus Exhibit and Design Group. Once the building was completed, the company moved 320 employees to the new facility. In August of 2014, Phase 3 construction began on a 256,000 square foot facility that will house Kellogg’s regional distribution center for cookies, crackers and snack products.
Growth in Development
Single family home construction was also on the rise in Woodridge. In 2014, the Village issued 30 permits for construction, including 8 new townhomes. This is an increase from 2013, when 27 permits were issued. With the approval of three single-family home subdivisions in 2014, the Village anticipates close to 300 new single-family homes to be constructed by 2019 based upon projections provided by developers. This five year projection brings the Village back to pre-recession housings starts, last reported in 2007.
The single family subdivisions approved in 2014 includes Fox Wood Estates near Dunham and 75th Street, Timber Edge near the intersection of 83rd Street and Lemont Road, and Farmingdale Village 26 near the intersection of Heritage Parkway and Lemont Road. Respectively, these developments were approved for 17, 149 and 107 single family home lots.
“Woodridge continues to see growth across retail, industrial/office and residential sectors,” said Mayor Cunningham. “The resurgence of home building is another great sign for the Village.”
Development trends are just one of the many topics covered in this year’s Village of Woodridge Economic Development Annual Report. The Annual Report highlights accomplishments, changes to the development environment, and challenges from the previous year. Now in its second year of production, the report helps track economic development benchmarks that will assist in establishing strategic goals for the community in years to come.