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Steinhafels furniture superstore to open in 2018 in Crystal Lake

City incentives could help the retailer with up to $600,000 in sales tax rebates

Furniture superstore Steinhafels soon will build its 18th store at 5846 Route 14 in Crystal Lake.
Furniture superstore Steinhafels soon will build its 18th store at 5846 Route 14 in Crystal Lake.

CRYSTAL LAKE – Wisconsin’s largest furniture seller is setting up shop in Crystal Lake, thanks in part to a sales tax incentive deal worth up to $600,000 over the next decade.

Steinhafels will open its 18th store in the former Kmart space, 5846 Route 14. Kmart closed in late 2014.

It took three years, but the city found a suitor for the nearly 100,000-square-foot space at a time when retailers looking for such a large building are rare, officials said. Steinhafels’ average store size is 80,000 square feet.

The store is in the Crystal Point Shopping Center between Best Buy and Ross Dress for Less.

Steinhafels Director of Stores Fred Schweinert said the process of locating in Crystal Lake has been “seamless.” Jobs at the store will be “above average” for the retail sector, he said.

“We’re extremely excited,” Schweinert said Monday at the City Council meeting. “It’s been a process that we’ve all kind of been looking for. That building is going to be a gem for us.”

The company expects a fall 2018 opening with 50 new jobs. The fourth-generation, family-owned business has stores throughout Wisconsin and northern Illinois. This will be its second store in Illinois. The other is in Vernon Hills.

Steinhafels and the shopping center owner, Inland Retail Corp., will make extensive improvements to the store, including removing asbestos tiles from the entire floor; replacing the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system; demolishing the mezzanine area; rebuilding the rear loading dock; and remodeling the entire exterior of the store with a new facade, more windows, awnings and lighting.

“[Steinhafels] is a top-shelf organization, all the way, and we’re absolutely thrilled to welcome them to Crystal Lake,” Mayor Aaron Shepley said, adding that the company has worked quickly to get started on the Route 14 location. “I think the people of Crystal Lake are going to greatly embrace the new amenities that they will make available for us.”

Shepley noted that it’s not often that empty, former big-box retail stores are filled by one business.

For example, the old Dominick’s in Crystal Lake was broken down into pieces for different organizations to occupy, Shepley said.

“Steinhafels is taking the building and they’re going to completely retool it and refurbish it, and put it back to wonderful conditions,” he said.

To help lure Steinhafels to the location, the City Council approved a sales tax incentive agreement with the company Monday night.

The city will send back to Steinhafels up to $600,000 in sales taxes generated by the store during the life of the
10-year deal.

It is estimated that the store could have $15 million in annual sales revenue, of which the city would share 40 percent of the
1 percent state sales taxes from the property with Steinhafels
. The city potentially could get about $2 million in sales tax from the store over 10 years.

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