Already growing fast, Somers poised for more growth

Somers, situated between Foxconn, Amazon and Uline, has seen an influx of development and is poised for more growth.

Apartment complexes, new senior housing, commercial development and infrastructure projects are changing the landscape of the bedroom community. Residents no longer have to leave their village to access professional services, restaurants and grocery stores.

Commercial development

Oakfire Pizzeria, a 10,000-square-foot restaurant slated to open in June at Somers Market Center north of Washington Road and west of Green Bay Road, is one positive example of the development boon in Somers, village chairman George Stoner said.

It is the restaurant’s second location. The first opened in Lake Geneva in 2015.

The restaurant will feature an open-concept kitchen with two wood-fired pizza ovens, 30 varieties of Neapolitan-style pizzas, indoor and outdoor seating, a 100-seat bar area and private event spaces. The restaurant and bar menu also includes pastas, appetizers and 20 tap beers.

The list of new businesses that have already opened in area is long, Stoner said. It includes Firestone, Starbucks, Shopko Opticals and a nail salon.

Other commercial development completed within the last year or underway in the village includes:

  • Heating and Cooling Solutions
  • Sozo Chiropractic
  • Verizon at Market Center
  • A multitenant building with Starbucks, Shopko Optical, and Evie’s Nail and Spa Salon at Market Center Somers Market Center
  • WVRC Vet Hospital at highways 31 and E
  • Jiffy Lube on Highway 31

Residential development

The commercial development would not have occurred without new housing, such as Mills Market Lane north of Walmart and Sam’s Club, Stoner said. Another 50 units were recently completed there, bringing the total to 330.

“That was the key component that spurred that whole area,” Stoner said. “Without that apartment complex going in, none of that other stuff would have happened.”

Construction of the Hawthorn Apartments buildings is ongoing at Highway E and Green Bay Road. This will add 214 more units, which are expected to be ready for occupancy in May. The development is valued at $30 million.

Also, Bear Development has broken ground at the former Parkview Tavern site, located on Sheridan Road west of Carthage College, which will feature 80 senior housing units and 16 side-by-side units. It will add between $10 and $15 million in value to the village.

“We are very excited about that one because it will be a nice senior citizen housing project that overlooks Carthage College,” Stoner said.

Future development

In 2020, construction of water, sanitary sewer and storm sewer infrastructure is planned to serve the Pritzker military archive center.

“It will open up that whole area — from Highway 142 to Highway E and from the frontage road to 100th Avenue — for development,” Stoner said, adding Pritzker “is putting up $14.5 million” to cover the cost and will recoup that as more development comes in.

The Pritzker development, on 288 acres, will feature:

  • Firearms Education & Training Center: To be built underground.
  • Cold War Memorial: A space to reflect and honor those who served from 1945 to 1991.
  • Commercial Archives: High-tech archival facilities to lease to other organizations and individuals.
  • Community green space: Dedicated public access to walking and bike paths and picnicking areas.

Based on the estimated value at build out of more than $60 million, and using the current tax rate, the village would collect $307,000 when outside the Tax Incremental District. Only 10 acres of the property will be tax exempt.

The amount all taxing bodies would collect would be $1.3 million.

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