The Autobarn today announced plans to convert the former Shure Incorporated headquarters on Hartrey to a support facility for its three Evanston-based dealerships.

222 Hartrey Ave. (file photo from Google Maps.)

Autobarn Evanston today announced plans to convert the former Shure Incorporated headquarters on Hartrey to a support facility for its three Evanston-based dealerships.

After Shure moved to new quarters in Niles, the building at 222 Hartrey Ave. had been purchased by a Jewish day school seeking to move to Evanston, but the city rejected zoning changes the school would have required and won a lawsuit filed by the school seeking to reverse that decision.

Autobarn owner Richard Fisher said the Hartrey site “will serve as a vehicle preparation, storage and display center, as well as a centralized site for administrative operations.”

“This will massively free up space and reduce congestion at our Chicago Avenue locations, Fisher said in a statement. “This new site will have the capacity for nearly 1000 prepared used or new vehicles for storage or display purposes.”

City officials have scheduled a news conference for Wednesday morning to provide details about the plans, which Alderman Ann Rainey, whose 8th Ward includes the site, says will accommodate the dealerships’ expansion needs with the goal of keeping all aspects of the business in Evanston.

The Autobarn first opened in Evanston 21 year ago at a time when there were five other auto dealerships in the city. It’s now the only dealership in town and sells VW, Mazada and Nissan vehicles here.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Ann Rainey, greatest alderman ever

    In Southwest Evanston,  Ann Rainey fights to keep land from being taken off the tax rolls….she wins, and helps a  local tax-paying business expand and stay in Evanston.  And in the process, traffic is reduced on Chicago Avenue!

    Why can't Ward 1 have such an awesome alderman?

    1. Impact on SW Evanston residents

      While I agree that this will be an asset to the tax roll of Evanston and certainly will alleviate some of the congestion on Chicago Avenue, the impact on our quiet section of SW Evanston needs to be addressed. If all traffic can be directed west in and out of the property, great. If, on the other hand, as I suspect, traffic will increase on Brummel St. where I live and many children are playing in the neighborhood, we are worried about noise, safety, and traffic being detrimental to the area.

  2. Very good outcome

    This seems like a great outcome for this location.  I'm glad to hear about this and see it a win for new jobs, property tax, and preserving commercial/industrial properites in Evanston. 

    It also seems that no subsidies or giveaways were involved.  If so, that's even better. Well done to all involved!

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