A suburban auto group has purchased the Sears store at Louis Joliet Mall and is reportedly considering a residential development and auto sales operation for the location, according to a Shaw Local News Network article published on Wednesday.
According to real estate news outlet The Real Deal, the Ghaben Auto Group, owned by Joe Ghaben, is the new owner of the site. The group also owns three Ultimo Motors dealerships in the suburbs. This latest acquisition covers 16.7 acres, with the old Sears building in the center, and cost approximately $4.3 million.
“They were really motivated,” Joliet Mayor Bob O’Dekirk said of the incoming company. “It’s interesting that this is the second high-end car dealership coming to the city.”
The official website for Ultimo Motors displays a stock inventory that includes brands such as Porsche, BMW, and Jaguar that are offered at Ultimo Motors' high-end dealerships in Northbrook, Warrenville, and Westmont.
Recently, indoor malls have relied more heavily on innovative development plans because of shopping trends that have eroded their former prominence as retail hubs. The Louis Joliet Mall is notable for its high occupancy, with the exception of the departure of two former anchors: Sears and fellow department store chain Carson Pirie Scott.