HUNTLEY – A house at 11708 Coral St. in Huntley that has fallen into disrepair could be replaced with a BBQ King Smokehouse and two retail businesses.
At Thursday’s Village Board meeting, Huntley trustees unanimously approved a bid to demolish the village-owned house, known as the Kelley House, for $24,821 and restore the site. Trustees also gave authorization to begin negotiations to redevelop the site into a multi-tenant retail and restaurant space.
Jason Szmurlo, owner of BBQ King Smokehouse in Woodstock, came before the board to present preliminary plans for the 7,640-square-foot building that would include his restaurant’s second location and two other retailers.
“I live close and I’ve got family in Huntley, and I just kind of knew that was the next place we were going to go,” Szmurlo said on why he chose the village.
The restaurant won first place in June at the Chicago Ribfest for the “Best Ribs Juried by our Celebrity Judges” category.
While the entire facade would have the appearance of a two-story building, the two approximately 1,500-square-foot retail spaces would have ground floor uses only. The restaurant would be about 4,700 square feet on the first floor, and 2,940 square feet on the second floor, according to village documents.
“The challenge here is to make this fit within the context of that Main Street kind of look, and make it look like three separate buildings, one for each tenant,” project architect David Gillespie said. “And it’s not just the building but it’s also the lifestyle. This building needs to be inviting and have a relationship with the square.”
The building’s front will be on Coral Street, and include a patio area for outdoor dining, which would be enclosed by a wrought iron fence, according to preliminary plans.
Trustee Niko Kanakaris suggested the building include office space on the second floor, but Szmurlo said two retailers interested in the spaces planned on using the high ceilings. He would not name tenants interested in the retail space.
Szmurlo said it’s too soon to say when the restaurant’s second location may open. Village Manager Dave Johnson said the structure should be razed by the end of March, and following the demolition surveying and design engineering services for the site’s redevelopment would be completed.
The village board also approved proposals for surveying and design engineering services at the site not to exceed $55,000, according to village documents.
The project is part of Huntley’s continued efforts to revitalize its downtown.