Huntley trustees said they are glad to see a proposal that would put the former Dean Foods facility at 11713 Mill St. back in business and bring more jobs to the community after the site has sat vacant for few months.
Representatives of Country Delight Inc., a milk and dairy distributor in the Chicago area who has been operating out of Dean Foods’ transportation facility north of the plant, were present during Thursday’s Village Bard meeting for a conceptual review of an outdoor vehicle storage request that would be part of plans to distribute, store and eventually produce dairy products from the facility.
A company representative said truck traffic from Country Delight will be a third of what the traffic was when Dean Foods was in operation.
Huntley resident Steinar Andersen, who lives adjacent to the site, asked whether any study has been done to support the claims about traffic and whether anything could be done to control noise levels after 6 p.m.
In light of these comments, Trustee John Piwko suggested that the petitioner submit reports evaluating any traffic congestion from the delivery trucks.
A few tentative modifications to the plant have been discussed by Country Delight, such as painting the building’s exterior, renovating office areas and replacing broken dock doors.
Trustee Niko Kanakaris said he thinks exterior work should not only be limited to paint.
To accomplish this, Kanakaris suggested the possibility of using tax increment financing dollars to help fund remodeling that would make the plant fit in with the downtown area.
In January, the roof of the site’s maintenance facility collapsed. Huntley Development Services Director Charles Nordman said that after Dean Foods representatives met with engineers, the decision was made to demolish the maintenance building, which will take place in the coming weeks.
In the event of demolition, a restoration plan would need to be presented to the board, according to village documents.