The next steps in a proposed relocation of the Hertz Car Sales operation in Schaumburg to neighboring Hoffman Estates are unclear after Hoffman Estates village board members voiced negative to merely neutral opinions of its being built on the former Hoffman Lanes bowling alley site.
Trustee Gary Pilafas said he didn't agree that such a high-profile location's best use was essentially a parking lot for vehicles retired from Hertz's rental fleet. As chair of the village board's finance committee, he said he was somewhat tempted by the prospect of car-sales tax but not enough.
"I pretty much concur with Trustee Pilafas," Mayor Bill McLeod said. "I'm not thrilled by this proposal."
The 2.7-acre site at 80 W. Higgins Road where the iconic Hoffman Lanes sign still stands is owned by WT Group LLC. Its previous plan to redevelop the shuttered bowling alley into a strip center of restaurants and stores with a facade evoking the building's original use was even more vehemently rejected by village board members at a courtesy review last September.
The new proposal, to tear down the former bowling alley and replace it with a new 4,200-square-foot building, received a little more support from some of the trustees but without strong enthusiasm.
Trustee Karen Arnet said she did like this building better, but her colleagues Karen Mills and Gary Stanton were critical of its vibrant yellow color.
Chris Starke, representing WT Group during its requested courtesy review by the board, assured them the appearance could be adjusted and the color toned down. He added that this site with its planned 272 parking spaces would be able to offer more inventory than any other Hertz Sales location.
Mills added that she still wasn't thrilled by the prospect of another used car dealership in the village. Stanton described himself as being ambivalent now after a poor first impression.
Trustee Michael Gaeta also described himself as neutral, while Trustee Anna Newell said she was as unsupportive of the current concept as Pilafas and McLeod were.
The Schaumburg location of Hertz Car Sales, which would close if a larger facility opens nearby, is at 855 W. Golf Road.