COURTESY OF COMMUNITY INVESTMENT CORPORTION
BY DAN MIHALOPOULOS AND DAVID ROEDER
Itasca-based ML Realty Partners LLC, owners of the old Brach’s candy plant at 401 N. Cicero , plans to start demolishing the remaining parts of it. A spokesman said asbestos work should be done by the fall and demolition should be finished by next spring. ML intends to replace the factory with a 520,000-square-foot industrial building.
The goal is to make the site more attractive for tenants and take advantage of an improving economy, the company said in a statement. But something else is spurring it into action.
It’s the threatened end of a $10.6 million city subsidy to help with demolition costs. The city in 2008 approved the deal for ML. It was due to expire last May 31 for lack of action at the site, but at the last moment the city extended it for six months.
A spokesman for the city’s Department of Housing and Economic Development said the deal requires the developer to finish a new building by Oct. 31, 2014. ML will have to hustle.
Hollywood did part of the job in 2007 when it blew up some of the Brach’s plant for a Batman movie.