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Developers seek more delays

Carroll Properties will ask the Evanston City Council Monday for a three-year delay in its deadlines for construction of two condominium towers Emerson Street downtown.

And the developer of a smaller project at 959 Dobson St. in south Evanston will ask Monday for a one-year delay.

In his request for a time extension for the downtown projects at 1890 Maple Ave. and 1881 Oak Ave., developer Robert King also revealed that Trader Joe’s, the grocery chain that had agreed to locate a store in the 1890 Maple building, has "delayed moving forward" with the project "for an unknown period of time."

King’s attorney, David Reifman, said the developer will work to persuade Trader Joe’s to move forward or find another tenant for the first-floor retail space in the planned building.

Reifman said, "the current recession has frozen the credit markets and has made it difficult to secure a construction loan" for either project.

The 18-story 1881 Oak project was originally approved in July 2006. After one previous extension, it currently has a construction start deadline of July 12, 2010.

The 14-story 1890 Maple project was originally approved in March 2007, After one previous extension, it currently has a construction start deadline of Oct. 1 2010.

The developer of the 33-unit project at 959 Dobson, Matt Douvikas, told city officials in a letter that "but for the unanticipated economic downturn, the project would have already been well underway."

"We believe it is in the best interests of Evanston, the community, and ourseves to begin construction when we can be assured of imediate occupancy rather than constructing a building, only to have it sit vacant," he added.

The Dobson project was approved in March 2007. After one previous extension, it now has a construction start deadline of March 2.

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