Massive Vandalia warehouse project stalls, at least temporarily

The city of Vandalia announced Monday that applications to build a large warehouse/office complex along the east end of Northwoods Boulevard have been withdrawn by the developer.

In a press release, Ambrose Property Group and Clous Road Partners indicated the companies are withdrawing the applications “in order to address feedback from the neighbors and city council for the property’s master plan.”

The conditional use and rezoning requests were part of the companies’ plan to construct over 1 million square feet of warehouse space with ancillary offices on a total of 88 acres of vacant land off Northwoods Boulevard, situated north of Halifax Drive, west of Cassel Road. The acreage is divided into two parcels, one that’s a total of 67 acres and one that is 21 acres.

ExploreSome Vandalia residents upset about 1M square-foot warehouse proposal

Vandalia’s planning commission in June declined to recommend approval of a conditional use, citing issues with the permit requirements for the land, which is zoned office/industrial park. Numerous residents have spoken out against the plans at public meetings.

The project proposal was officially presented to council July 18, and members were originally scheduled to vote on the issue at the Aug. 1 special meeting. However, the developer had asked for an extension, according to city officials.

“We rescheduled the issue at the request of the applicant (Ambrose Property Group), who wants to consider potential modifications based on feedback provided at the council study session,” Vandalia city spokesman Rich Hopkins said in late July.

A group of residents had publicly called on the city to deny the warehouse plans as they currently stand, asserting the warehouse project would negatively impact quality of life for the area’s residents and asking city officials to consider the environmental and infrastructure effects of allowing the plans to move forward.

City Manager Dan Wendt said last month that the conditional use request is part of the developer’s due diligence process, and the land is currently owned by CSX railroad. No potential end user has been announced.

The companies’ press release does not specify when or if they plan to resubmit applications to the city.

“Ambrose and Clous have no timeline or additional details to share at this time,” the companies said.

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