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735 Essington Road, Suite 102, Joliet, Illinois 60435

Zoning OK’d for senior site

The Herald News

By Bob Okon

Mar 2, 2011

JOLIET — The Joliet City Council on Tuesday approved zoning for a supportive living center at 500 Stryker Ave. despite one neighbor’s complaint that a strobe light from a radio tower at the site is annoying people.

The zoning approval paves the way for construction to start possibly in May on Tower Place, a two-story, 50-unit facility for elderly residents who need help with housekeeping and personal care but are not ready for a nursing home.

Tower Place will be built adjacent to a new location for Prayer Tower Church of God in Christ, which plans to occupy a now-empty building that was partially constructed several years ago for another church that never used it.

Councilman Warren Dorris, who is pastor of Prayer Tower Church of God in Christ, abstained from the vote. All other council members approved the zoning.

The plans had previously passed through the city’s zoning board of appeals and plan commission without opposition.

Will zoning affect radio tower?

William Troka, a local attorney who lives nearby on Midland Avenue, asked the council Tuesday to reject the zoning or at least delay it until concerns about a radio tower at the site are resolved.

Troka said a strobe light on top of the 200-foot tower “bombards our homes and there’s no way to escape it.”

The tower, used by Nicor Gas for radio communications, was approved a year ago and was not part of the zoning proposal before the council.

One major concern posed by Troka was that a rezoning of the tower site would impede any attempts to do something about the strobe light. He said federal tower regulations are tighter on towers on residentially zoned land.

But City Attorney Jeff Plyman said later that the rezoning vote does not affect the tower, which continues to be on land zoned for residential use.

Michael Hansen, attorney for the Tower Place development, said the tower met all rules and regulations when it was approved.

“Due consideration was given this situation,” Hansen said. “We think everything has been properly covered. Safeguards are in place.”

Partnership

Tower Place is being developed by a partnership created between the Will County Housing Development Corp., a development arm of the Housing Authority of Joliet, and Tower Community Development, a newly created affiliate of the church designed for this project.

Representatives from both organizations said construction on Tower Place and completion of the church could begin in May.

Church renovations, however, depend on completion of a pending sale of Prayer Tower’s current site on East Cass Street.

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