Hoffman Estates officials Monday unanimously approved a detailed redevelopment plan for the former AT&T campus, including a 90-day extension for the New Jersey-based developer to complete its purchase of the 150-acre site before its conditional rezoning expires.
Somerset Development hopes to repeat the success of its similar redevelopment of the old Bell Labs building in Holmdel, New Jersey, by converting the AT&T buildings into a mix of stores, restaurants, entertainment venues and offices.
The firm also plans to sell some of the adjacent land to another developer for the new construction of 380 multifamily residential units and 170 townhouses.
Though the number of both types of housing units is allowed to vary by 8 percent, the total cannot exceed 550.
Ken Gold, vice president of acquisitions and development for Somerset, said the next step for the project will be closing on the property, which was originally allowed only six months by last August's rezoning approval.
After that, the developer will seek permits for interior demolition at the buildings before returning with more specifics on the new internal design, Gold said.
"We look to begin construction this year," he said. "We'd really like to keep the momentum going."
Maintaining a relationship between the residential and commercial construction will be a priority, Gold said. The firm hopes to have at least some of the expected amenities available for the first residents who move in.
Village board members have also approved a tax increment financing district as an economic incentive for the commercial part of the development alone.
A TIF district freezes the amount of property taxes local governments receive at the level of its first year. As property values increase, additional taxes go to a fund to pay for public improvements. TIF districts expire after 23 years or when all public improvements are paid for, whichever comes first.