07/09/2003 12:00AM

Town buys up Sportsman's lots

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A public auction of equipment Tuesday at the defunct Sportsman's Park fell apart when the Town of Cicero swooped in and bought all the lots en masse. The move signaled Cicero's intention to purchase and redevelop the Sportsman's property, which sits on the southern edge of the town.

An intergovernmental affairs consultant for Cicero, David Donohue, told the Chicago Sun-Times that the town had bought all the items in order to facilitate Cicero's plans for the property. The town reportedly made an agreement to buy the property in March, and may finalize the purchase sometime this week. According to published reports in Chicago, Cicero plans to sell the property for redevelopment.

Tuesday's auction was advertised as a chance for the public to snatch up pieces of the track, which converted to a dual horse- and auto-racing facility in 1999, but announced last year it was closing its doors. Televisions, trucks and other equipment were supposed to be open for bidding before Cicero stepped in and paid $330,000 for the bulk purchase.