Business, Local News

Apparel Redefined plans major expansion in Homewood: Village approves land purchase and redevelopment

The Homewood Board of Trustees on Tuesday, June 27, approved a letter of intent with Apparel Redefined to assist with the purchase and redevelopment of village-owned land on 175th Street and an adjacent office building. The site will be the company’s new headquarters.

Apparel Redefined, a leading custom-decorated apparel screen printing and monogramming company, has announced plans for growth and relocation in Homewood. The company’s CEO John LaRoy said the business has outgrown its current facility and plans to more than double its size to meet the growing demand for its highly customized athletic apparel products.

Apparel Redefined, founded in 1970, is a prominent nationwide supplier of custom silk screening and embroidery products. With a focus on custom athletic apparel, the company has built a reputation for quality and personalized service. The company services local schools, small businesses, and major league teams nationwide.

Homewood plans to acquire the property at 1313 175th St. as part of an economic development deal that would
bring Apparel Redefined to the village. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)

Apparel Redefined has set its sights on two properties on 175th Street in Homewood to accommodate its growth. The first property is a four-acre vacant lot owned by the village at 1351 175th St. The site will house the company’s new, expanded manufacturing facility.

The second property, 1313 175th St., is an office building next to the vacant lot. According to a village memo, the company plans to use the office building for corporate offices and meeting rooms.

The company is currently located in Crestwood and its lease is set to expire at the end of September 2023, making it critical for both parties to secure the necessary agreements as soon as possible.

Recognizing the potential for economic growth and job creation, the village has negotiated with Apparel Redefined to purchase and redevelop the two properties. Because both properties are located in the Northeast Tax Increment Financing District (TIF), certain costs are eligible for TIF reimbursement.

Director of Economic and Community Development Angela Mesaros explained that this plan benefits the village long-term by providing sustainable wage employment and job creation.

The village’s purchase option and contract for the 1313 175th Street building outline critical points, such as a $400,000 purchase price with a $25,000 non-refundable option fee.

The agreement provides the company 60 days for due diligence, including environmental assessments, financial analysis, and negotiating terms with the village, and another 90 days to obtain all necessary zoning approvals. The village will not market or negotiate with other parties during this time.

The proposed sale and redevelopment of the properties will benefit the village significantly, according to Mesaros. The project aims to revitalize a long-vacant parcel of land. The site is the last available piece within the 178-acre light industry park the village began developing in 1992.

“The only interest has been from heavy trucking companies for truck parking, which we have not considered,” Mesaros said. “There will not be trucking on this site.”

The development is consistent with the village’s plans and zoning regulations for the area, increasing the overall Equalized Assessed Value, she said.

Apparel Redefined’s expansion of operations in Homewood is expected to bring numerous long-term benefits to the community. In his presentation to the board, LaRoy details how the project will introduce an established and growing business that will provide long-term employment opportunities and the potential for future job creation. He said he hopes to double the current staff of nearly 60 people within five years, if all goes well.

“One of the things I really focus on is creating careers, not jobs,” he said. “I want to do my part to return America to manufacturing greatness.”

LaRoy further explained his hopes to integrate into the Homewood community by getting involved with the village, providing educational opportunities and potentially offering children’s birthday party entertainment.  

“Everything you’ve said here today, you’re going to be a great neighbor!” said Trustee Lauren Roman.

A four-acre village-owned lot in the foreground will be part of a package that is part of the new location of Apparel Redefined
after trustees voted on Tuesday to sell the property. Trustees also voted to purchase the building at 1313 175th St., in the
background right, to include it in the deal. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)

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