Garden center transfer station drawing concern
Updated: July 3, 2012 9:24AM
An group of Northbrook neighbors who live near Red’s Garden Center are fighting the proposed addition of a landscape waste transfer station at the Huehl and Dundee Roads site.
They delivered their concerns to the Northbrook village board May 22 citing worries about noise, traffic, health, dust, rodents, insects, odor and increased traffic, while emphasizing that the addition would change their quality of life.
The owners of the property at 3460 Dundee Road, T&C Sisters, L.L.C., would like to enter into an agreement with Nu-Earth Organics of Waukegan for the pick-up of landscape waste brought in by customers as a way of increasing business.
That would mean about 25 small landscape trucks would drop loads of grass clippings, brush and small tree branches daily 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday into a 400 square foot bin to be picked up within 24 hours by two or three large trailers.
And the trucks would enter and exit Red’s property using Huehl Road, already a busy thoroughfare, said neighbors who see the station as only increasing problems for them.
“The hours of operation are totally unreasonable.
What landscaper is going to have a full truck by 7 a.m.? That hour is just too early,” said Bruce Buyer, a Laburnum Court resident.
“It’s not only unreasonably early for nearby residents, but whatever is in the truck has to have been there overnight and is going to smell.”
The number of trucks discussed can only increase the noise and dust, said Michael Shelist, another Laburnum Court resident.
“And there has been no limit to the trucks discussed,” he added.
Ron Soloman, a Dundee Road resident, said the backup alarms on the trucks can’t be turned off while they are at Red’s, then turned on again before they leave.
That means almost constant noise, he added.
“And if ambulances are delayed by the increased truck traffic, someone will die,” said David Shapiro, also a Laburnum Court resident.
Resident Sandra Shelist said she felt betrayed by the board.
“How dare they approve this!” she added. “Would they want this in their back yards?”
But Trustee James Karagianis noted that while the site is not in his back yard, it is not far from his back yard.
And if there are problems he will be aware of them.
“I’m willing to put on enough restrictions to prevent problems, but allow Red’s to thrive and grow. It’s a balancing act,” he added.
The board also can review the operation in a year and if Red’s is not in compliance with the restrictions, the station can be shut down, he added.
Trustee A.C. Buehler III added that he has gone through the plan commission reports and heard the residents’ testimony, and believes the plan commission is right in recommending approval of the waste transfer station.
However, Village President Sandra Frum said she wouldn’t back it.
“Red’s has been here longer than I have, which is more than 30 years, but I’m not sure its appropriate for Red’s to expand here,” Frum added.
“I’m the single ‘no’ vote here, but the board can restrict the number of trucks per day. And is the 7 a.m. start time really needed? Maybe 8 a.m. would work better.”
Karagianis agreed that starting later — maybe even as late as 9 a.m. — would reduce the nuisance factor.
The board members decided to look further at the hours of operation and number of trucks visiting Red’s Garden Center before allowing a landscape waste transfer station to be established.
A decision may come at the June 12 meeting.