Council to consider architecture agreement of DeKalb transit center

NIU+bus+driver+speaks+with+a+passenger+Monday+outside+the+Holmes+Student+Center.

Patrick Murphy | Northern Star

NIU bus driver speaks with a passenger outside the Holmes Student Center.

Kierra Frazier, News Editor

DeKALB – City Council members will consider a resolution for the architecture and engineering design of a city transit maintenance and operations facility at Monday’s meeting.

The resolution authorizes a $1 million agreement with Stantec Architecture, Inc. for the architectural and engineering design work on a transit maintenance and operations facility capable of housing all the transit assets for the DeKalb Urbanized Area, according to the April 12 City Council agenda. 

The city-owned transit facility is being considered to be located along Dresser Road, neighboring the DeKalb County Health Department and DeKalb High School. The land is 30 acres in size with approximately 15 usable acres for a transit operations and maintenance facility.

Stantec will evaluate the Dresser Road site in various categories including deadhead analysis, vehicular access, impact on adjacent roadways, easements, access to utilities, and other areas such as wetland impact, ecological resources and historical resources, according to the agenda.

The proposed site is within proximity to NIU as approximately 85% of the fixed-route system begins and ends at the Holmes Student Center and DuSable Turnaround.

Currently, the City doesn’t have a designated transit facility to house its vehicles and equipment and instead relies on contracted transit service providers to lease their own facilities.

The city has received numerous capital grant awards over the past seven years to help with the costs of the facility. A total of $8.75 million is available in capital funding to begin progress on the design and eventual construction of a transit maintenance and operations facility.

Extension for obtaining a state-issued cannabis dispensary license 

An ordinance on first reading to extend the time limit to July 1, 2022, to obtain a state-issued cannabis dispensary license for NuMed Partners will also be considered at Monday’s meeting.

On April 27, the City approved an ordinance that granted a special use permit for an adult-use and medical cannabis dispensary at the Junction Shopping Center, 818 W. Lincoln Highway for NuMed Partners. The ordinance required the applicant to obtain a state-issued license within one year however COVID-19 disrupted the process.

The process has been reactivated and NuMed recently submitted a petition requesting Council approval to extend the time period for obtaining the State license to July 1, 2022. The Planning and Zoning Commission held a public hearing regarding the petition at their meeting on April 5 and approved the extension by a vote of 4 to 1.

NuMed Partners is an Illinois-based pharmaceutical grade cannabis producer and retailer and currently operates three medical and adult-use cannabis dispensaries in Chicago, East Peoria and Urbana, according to the agenda.