MARKHAM | A Cook County judge will decide Friday how much money the owners of the Lincoln Mall shopping center in Matteson must provide to cover the cost of repairs needed for the facility’s survival.
Judge Thomas J. Condon has ordered Lincoln Mall Holding Co. provide $200,000 in payments to a court-appointed receiver to cover the cost of repairs to an elevator and the elimination of blocked fire exits.
But the receiver, Chicago-based Collateral Trust, has said that will not be enough to cover the cost of repairs needed. Attorneys for the holding company have said they believe state law prohibits the receiver from demanding money of the property owner for repairs.
Court hearings in this legal battle have been attended by employees of the assorted stores in the Lincoln Mall, with most curious to see how long the mall will remain open and if they will still have jobs.
But for the receiver, they are concerned with trying to deal with the wide range of repairs needed to the Lincoln Mall structure, at the southeast corner of Lincoln Highway and Cicero Avenue.
Officials say problems range from exposed electrical wiring, a dismantled sprinkler system, blocked fire exits and a crumbling roof.
Condon has said he believes the receivership is focused on “making the building safe as soon as possible.”
The receivership has said the rents being paid by the mall’s tenants do not provide enough money for them to pay for repairs. Just under half of the 100 storefronts are filled, with only Carson’s remaining as an anchor tenant to the mall.
Attorneys for the receiver have said Lincoln Mall will lose about $1.2 million per year, based on current rents being paid by tenants.
Attorneys for New York-based real estate developer Michael Kohan have said they do not have more funds to cover the full cost of payments.