Attorney sues over new Crown Point library parking lot plan
By Carrie Napoleon Post-Tribune correspondent August 15, 2012 5:32PM
Three homes at the intersection of Robinson Court and East Street in Crown Point are to be demolished and become parking for the new Crown Point Library. | Jeffrey D. Nicholls~Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 17, 2012 12:57PM
CROWN POINT — A lawsuit alleging the violation of city ordinances and improper action by a city board has been filed in regard to the library’s planned public/private parking lot at the northeast corner of Robinson Court and East Street.
Plaintiff Main Street Professional Center LCC, owned by attorney David Austgen, filed suit July 26 in Lake County Circuit Court with Judge George Paras against the city, the Board of Works and Public Safety and the Crown Point Community Library alleging misconduct in the approval of the parking lot and angled parking along Robinson Court in the public right of way.
“We are suing for violation of the city ordinances and improper approvals of the proposals made by the library and improper action of the Board of Works in approving the parking configuration into the right of way on Robinson Court,” Austgen said.
He said there are number of issues with the parking lot including the angled parking along Robinson Court, the approximately 15-inch differentiation in grade between the lot and the property on which his law office sits, and with storm drainage that did not get addressed.
“In our minds the primary items had to do with the site plan,” Austgen said.
The Plan Commission June 11 approved the site plan for the 18-space parking lot after revisions were made that accommodated the city’s setback requirements. A request for a special use permit from the Board of Zoning Appeals to allow an additional six parking spaces in the right of way along Robinson Court was withdrawn by the library.
Then on June 27 the Board of Works approved a traffic plan that would turn Robinson Court into a one-way street westbound between East and Main streets. It does not appear from minutes of that meeting the traffic plan included the six angled parking spaces.
City Attorney David Nicholls declined to comment on the suit following his policy of not commenting on pending litigation except to say he has filed an appearance on the city’s behalf.
Board of Zoning Appeals attorney Joe Irak said he, too, has filed his appearance and must look more in-depth into the suit.
“The city is investigating the allegations. It appears the thrust of the case is about the angled parking,” Irak said.
Irak said he must look into the Board of Works’ action with the city attorney and city engineer to determine if the angled parking was approved.
A hearing date has not been set.