An exterior view of the development project in Northbrook Illinois that would include a Life Time Fitness Rendering courtesy Development Summary handout

An exterior view of the development project in Northbrook, Illinois, that would include a Life Time Fitness. (Rendering courtesy Development Summary handout.)

Life Time Fitness Nears Approval for 'Target Market' Location in Chicago Suburb

The proposed mixed-use development project calls for a Life Time Fitness club, an apartment complex and a Children's Learning Adventure day care facility in Northbrook, Illinois.

A proposal led by Life Time Fitness, Chanhassen, Minnesota, to develop a contentious real estate property in Northbrook, Illinois, appears headed for approval.

The Northbrook Village Board recently voted 6-1 to prepare documents to approve the 570,000-square-foot project. A formal vote is expected Dec. 8, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The proposed mixed-use development project calls for a 91,000-square-foot Life Time Fitness club, a 338-unit Finger Companies apartment building and a 43,000-square-foot Children's Learning Adventure day care facility at 1000 Skokie Boulevard.

The Northbrook market was a "target market" for "the better part of the last decade," Life Time Fitness said in a preliminary proposal filed with the city in December 2014. Life Time Fitness explored multiple sites through the years and was part of a 2008 development proposal at the Skokie Boulevard site that failed, according to the proposal.

Other failed projects at the site include a proposed Costco and Walmart.

Life Time Fitness is the contract purchaser for the 18.1-acre parcel, and the Finger Companies is a contract purchaser from Life Time Fitness for 6.5 acres. In the proposal, Life Time Fitness said it "feels that it is important to develop this key property as a cohesive whole and to control the development of the entire parcel with users that are complementary with Life Time Fitness."

Life Time Fitness did not immediately respond to a Club Industry request seeking comment for this story.

Life Time Fitness has nine locations in the Chicago area, including Life Time Athletic centers in nearby Skokie and Vernon Hills.

If the Village Board approves the project, the board would override its plan commission, which voted to recommend the project not move forward in September. The commissioners cited a lack of sales tax income for the village, according to the Tribune.

The Northbrook North Suburban YMCA, LA Fitness, Five Seasons Family Sports Club, 9Round, Eco Gym and Hot Ground Gym are within 10 miles of the proposed Life Time Fitness location.

"We have a plethora of services already available to our community," North Suburban YMCA CEO Howard Schultz told the Village Board, according to the Tribune. "A proposal of this magnitude provides more, but the community has a lot of services available already. In your considerations, I hope you consider the impact this will have on the rest of the community."

The North Suburban YMCA, which serves 11 communities, is finishing an eight-year improvement plan that has infused $6.5 million in capital improvements into the facility so far, according to the Tribune. The YMCA's basement fitness and track area was upgraded to a rubberized surface, new weightlifting and new cardio equipment.

Construction Begins in California

Life Time Fitness is further ahead on a location in Sacramento, California, where construction is under way on its second club in that market, according to the Sacramento Business Journal, citing Life Time Fitness officials. An opening date has yet to be determined for the planned 116,636-square-foot Life Time Athletic Folsom club at 110 Serpa Way, though Folsom's city website anticipates an opening for fall 2016.

In May, Life Time Fitness opened a two-story, 307,000-square-foot club in Roseville with 400 pieces of cardio and resistance equipment, and 14 tennis courts. The Roseville center cost $30 million to build, according to the Journal.

Development Summary for 1000 Skokie Boulevard, Northbrook, Illinois:

 
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