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T.J. Maxx's DeKalb move to include expanded shopping center signs

DeKALB – The T.J. Maxx store in DeKalb is making some moves across the street from its current Oakland Place Shopping Center location and will have a bigger sign to boot after a recent DeKalb City Council vote.

The City Council voted, 6-0, during their most recent meeting to approve amendments to sign regulations for the Northland Plaza Shopping Center on Sycamore Road. The retailer was looking to make the storefront sign bigger to better match neighboring stores’ signs proportionately.

DeKalb City Manager Bill Nicklas said the requested sign regulation changes from T.J. Maxx will make the store front more “visible and there’s more curb appeal.”

“What they have proposed is something that works for them, but also I think works for the units in the back there and, as there’s turnover, taking that into consideration,” Nicklas said.

There was no additional discussion amongst aldermen before the vote during the Monday meeting. Second Ward Alderwoman Barb Larson and Fifth Ward Alderman Scott McAdams were absent from the meeting.

According to a July 8 social media post from the City of DeKalb, the store will be relocating to a new 27,000 sq. ft. space off of Illinois Route 23 near ALDI, which also made a similar move across the street from its previous location now housing Harbor Freight Tools and opened its current location in July 2019.

“This is right next to ALDI to the north,” Scott Zak, management analyst for the City of DeKalb, wrote in a July 8 email. “So that was the former J.C. Penney space.”

Petitioners affiliated with the store also expressed the desire for a wall sign twice the frontage of the storefront instead of the allowable 1.5 times the frontage.

The City received a petition from the owners of the Northland Plaza Shopping Center along Sycamore Road to amend the wall sign regulations for the building at the rear of the property.

According to the June 23 rezoning petition submitted to the city, the setback from building frontage to the right of way of Sycamore Road is 630 feet. The petitioner wrote the proposed sign will be uniform with others in the area the store is looking to move to.

“A larger sign will give T.J. Maxx better visibility,” the petitioner wrote. “The building facade/parapet wall is very large in area, and our new proposed sign will look architecturally correct versus looking undersized. The other anchor tenants have letters that at least 5′-0″ or greater in height.”

The Northland Plaza Shopping Center currently includes Planet Fitness, ALDI, Ross, Petsmart and Hobby Lobby, according to the city’s social media post.

The update comes after the DeKalb Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously approved the sign amendment proposal during its July 19 meeting.

“T.J. Maxx is a long-standing retailer in DeKalb,” city officials wrote in the social media post. “And City officials are pleased they have decided to remain in the community.”

The former JC Penny's loacation in the Northland shopping center in DeKalb.

The former JC Penny’s loacation in the Northland shopping center in DeKalb. (Mark Busch –

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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