- Dec. 4: Diversified Partners, an Arizona-based real estate firm, contacts Homewood village officials about redeveloping Calumet Country Club, which the company is planning to buy. The company presents a preliminary vision of the development that includes a retail anchor store, plus entertainment, a hotel and smaller retail stores.
- Dec. 18: Diversified Partners presents a revised preliminary plan to the village that would split the property between a light industrial park and a housing development with small retail uses along Dixie Highway.
- Feb. 4: Diversified Partners presents a plan for redeveloping the property as a trucking hub and fulfillment center. Homewood officials decline to support that use.
- April: Prevision Golf, a company affiliated with Diversified Partners, takes over operation of the country club and partially opens the 118-year-old private club to the public for the first time.
- May: Homewood Mayor Richard Hofeld and Trustee Barbara Dawkins visit Elmwood, Illinois, home to a fulfillment center similar to what Diversified Partners is proposing, so they can get a better sense for whether such a facility would be a good fit with Homewood.
- July 10: CCC Investors LLC, owners of Calumet Country Club, files a lawsuit to disconnect the property at 2136 175th St. from the village of Homewood.
- July 15: Hofeld sends a letter to the Hazel Crest Board of Trustees asking for support in Homewood’s efforts to stop an industrial redevelopment of Calumet Country Club. Homewood officials assume if the disconnect petition is granted, the developer will seek to annex the property to Hazel Crest.
- July 18: The Homewood Board of Trustees holds a special meeting giving residents details of the pending disconnection of the country club property and the developer’s plans for an industrial project. Residents oppose the plan, ask questions and suggest alternative uses for the property.
- Sept. 4: The Homewood Board of Trustees hosts a second public meeting giving an update on the situation. Village Attorney Chris Cummings explains the legal standard the court will use to determine whether the property owner can disconnect from the village. He says the property meets most of the criteria and says the village’s chances of prevailing in court are slim.
- Spring/Summer: The disconnect lawsuit continues.
- October: Diversified Partners now owns the property and joins the lawsuit seeking to disconnect the property from Homewood.
- Jan. 26: The Homewood Village Board approves a settlement agreement with Diversified Partners that plans to provide the company financial and other incentives for keeping the development in Homewood. Without the settlement agreement, the board worries the village will lose the land and development to neighboring Hazel Crest. This way, says Hofeld, the village will at least have “some measure of control.”
- Jan. 27: The group South Suburbs for Greenspace Over Concrete forms. Its members initiate information campaigns and subsequently organize protests at village board and Planning and Zoning Commission meetings.
- Feb. 11: The first meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission, which must consider whether to recommend the village board take action on four issues: 1) Rezone the property from open lands to light manufacturing, 2) Approve a special use permit for the operation of a trucking hub/fulfillment center on the property, 3) Approve a planned unit development governing the development of the facility and 4) Amend the village’s land use plan to account for the zoning change.
- Feb. 16: Following an emergency meeting, Hazel Crest village trustees and Mayor Vernard Alsberry release a late-night statement indicating they will not support the redevelopment plans. Prior to the announcement, Hazel Crest officials had said the village remained neutral on the redevelopment project, a factor that played a key role in Homewood’s decision to enter into the settlement agreement.
- Feb. 17: The P&Z Commission reconvenes the public hearing, with a steady stream of residents posing questions to three representatives of the developer. The meeting is continued.
- Feb. 25: The third continuation of the P&Z Commission has a number of residents address commissioners. The meeting lasts more than four hours.
- March 2: Economic Development Director Angela Mesaros resigns after being caught on a live mic before the Feb. 25 meeting began making disparaging comments that offended many residents opposing the project.
- March 3: The public hearing portion of the P&Z process concludes in a seven-hour session.
- March 4: The P&Z Commission members ask more questions, then conclude with comments about the project. After 20 hours of presentations and public comment stretching over five sessions, commissioners decide they will not recommend approval of Diversified Partners’ request to rezone the property for light manufacturing use.
- March 9: After the zoning commission completes its process, the rezoning request moves to the village board for consideration. Homewood trustees vote against granting the rezoning request.
- March 12: Five Homewood residents file a petition to join the lawsuit seeking to disconnect the property from Homewood.
- April 1: Judge Maureen Ward Kirby rules that five Homewood residents can join the lawsuit as defendants, along with the village of Homewood, to argue against the disconnection petition.
- April 13: Homewood trustees approve an ordinance formally disconnecting the Calumet Country Club property from the village.
- Sept. 13: South Suburbs for Greenspace (formerly South Suburbs for Greenspace over Concrete) holds a meeting to inform the community about the process by which the country club property, now in unincorporated Cook County, could be redeveloped.
- Sept. 27: Hazel Crest residents and members of the South Suburbs for Greenspace address the Hazel Crest Board of Trustees to express opposition to a new version of proposal to redevelop the property. The new version created by Catalyst Consulting, apparently on behalf of Diversified Partners, adds hospitality, agriculture, retail and recreational uses to the plan, but warehousing remains the heart of the project.
- Oct. 27: Forest Preserves of Cook County officials confirm that Calumet Country Club is not currently on the agency’s acquisition list.
- January and February: Catalyst Consulting, partners with Calumet Country Club owner Walt Brown, hold a series of information sessions each Thursday night at the clubhouse to present their concept for redeveloping the property as a commercial/industrial complex. Their plan includes warehousing, a prefabricated homes factory, an aquaponics facility, a hotel, a condominium, a sports stadium and a water park.
- Jan. 10: Hazel Crest Board of Trustees approves hiring a consultant to study the feasibility of creating a tax increment finance district on the Calumet Country Club property. The village would have to annex the land before implementing a TIF district.
- Jan. 24: Hazel Crest Board of Trustees discusses a request from property owner Walt Brown during its administrative meeting. SSG members and Hazel Crest residents use the public comment section of the regular meeting to oppose annexation and the redevelopment project.
- Feb. 14: Hazel Crest Board of Trustees approves the annexation of Calumet Country Club. SSG members rally before the meeting and five are removed from the meeting for demanding to have a chance to speak before the vote on annexation. The public comment portion of the agenda normally placed before votes was removed, so no public comments were allowed prior to the annexation vote. Residents from Hazel Crest, East Hazel Crest, Homewood and Flossmoor speak during the post-vote public comment period. No one speaks in favor of the redevelopment project.
Updated Feb. 18, 2023.