(Crain’s) – The developer of a planned shopping center in New Lenox has given Wal-Mart Stores Inc. a roughly 18% price discount on its site in the 500,000-square-foot development in a deal that demonstrates how anchor retailers command more favorable terms than smaller tenants.

McVickers Development LLC is moving ahead with plans for the project after buying 73.5 acres last month along Lincoln Highway at Williams Street. The land was purchased from two sellers for a combined price of $18.9 million, according to Will County property records. The bulk of the site, about 71.7 acres, was owned by a land trust controlled by James H. Warning, a longtime New Lenox real estate investor, according to sources and public records.

The price of nearly $6 a square foot is about half the price of some large commercial sites in New Lenox, says James Wirt, a lawyer and longtime real estate investor in the area. But the McVickers site is bounded by railroad tracks on two sides, limiting its access and possibly reducing its value, he says.

John McVickers, president of the Hoffman Estates-based development firm that bears his name, declines to comment on the land transactions. Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based retail developer Continental Properties Co. had considered developing the site several years ago.

Anchor retailers Wal-Mart and home improvement chain Menard Inc. will own their own stores in the development, which will also include retailers such as Petco, Staples and Aldi, according to a McVickers site plan.

The Wal-Mart will be about 200,000 square feet, while the Menards will be about 140,000 square feet, Mr. McVickers says.

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