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The Meijer superstore construction site on the 
southwest side of Flossmoor.
(Photo by Tom 
Houlihan/HF Chronicle)

First the footings. Then the foundation. Then the walls.

One of the wettest springs in Illinois history may have delayed construction of the Meijer superstore at Flossmoor’s southwest corner. But, with most of the underground utility work completed, construction of the actual store – all 192,000 square feet of it – is about to begin.

Scott Bugner, the village’s inspectional services administrator, said Monday that building permits for the store and adjacent gas station are likely to be issued this week. When that happens, Pepper Construction, the general contractor for the project, will be able to move ahead with the first steps in building the store.

Bugner said installation of the footings, which help distribute the weight of the foundation over a greater area and prevent settling, could begin this week. After that, the foundation will be poured. Then the walls can be built.

“I will not be surprised if the walls are going up by the end of this month,” Bugner said. “Everything is really going to pick up over there.”

Under the store’s construction timeline, the walls and roof are to be in place by the time cold weather arrives. That way, crews can work inside throughout the winter so that it will be ready for a spring grand opening.

The complex is located on the north side of Vollmer Road just east of Crawford Avenue. Flossmoor purchased the 91-acre parcel 24 years ago. The village cleared the property and made infrastructure improvements through the creation of a tax increment financing district.

Ground was broken for the Meijer complex at a ceremony in mid-May. Meijer Group Vice President Gerald Melville said at that time that construction of one of his company’s superstores generally creates 600 construction jobs.

Since then, Pepper has focused on completing the underground utilities and grading at the site, Bugner said. However, an exceptionally rainy spring slowed down crews as they installed the below-surface infrastructure.

“It’s getting better but the site was still wet last week,” he said. “That slowed things down, especially putting in the underground utilities.”

Even with the wet weather Bugner predicted that the construction crews will meet their winter deadline.

“By September it’s going to look a lot like a store building,” he said.

Work is also about to begin on interior roads at the Meijer complex, he said.

The store, when completed, will offer a wide range of grocery and general merchandise, including national brands, a full service pharmacy, electronics and photo department and lawn/garden center. According to Meijer officials, the store will offer more than 600 types of fresh produce, a full-service deli and meat counter and in-store bakery.

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