Properties along West New York Street in downtown Aurora could
become part of a development which includes Billy Goat Tavern
The same developer pursuing the Elks Club condo development project in downtown Aurora has been acquiring various properties along West New York Street, west of Hollywood Casino, in the hope of creating a "restaurant row."
After the City of Aurora gave Downers Grove-based Irish bar Ballydoyle a couple million in incentives to come to downtown Aurora, the developer is hoping to get the City of Aurora to bet another $1.25 million on his efforts to bring Billy Goat Tavern to downtown Aurora as one of the three restaurants and a few upper-level residential units.
The funds, which would come from a TIF (Tax-Increment Financing), would be given over three years, with the majority of $700,000 front-ended in Year 1, $400,000 in Year 2 and $150,000 in Year 3, paid in full provided the restaurants stayed in business. Overall construction and renovation would cost another million, on top of land acquisition for a total project cost of $3.9 million, according to the developer.
Several variations of restaurants and bars have been made at the site, but developer is counting on a "synergy" effect with Ballydoyle across the street and hopes the combined efforts will make it a "destination."
Those previous attempts received thousands in TIF funds with varying results.
Can Chicago-based Billy Goat Tavern help West New York Street? The establishment has been well-known in the Chicago area for decades, but sources say will be leaving a couple existing locations, including Navy Pier.
From the success of River Street Plaza along with Waubonsee College's campus under construction to various mixed-use retail, restaurant, office and residential, a future state-of-the-art library combined with demolition of old structures such as the Beacon-News building and current police station, there is an emerging center of synergy along River Street.
Can West New York Street also succeed and help extend the synergy?