It turns out that the QCTimes articles about the Menards dark store agreement were a bit inaccurate. This article said, "Worried that the 53rd Street store would sit empty and be an eyesore for months or years, Davenport aldermen demanded the company have a buyer or renter for its existing store before starting construction on the $15 million project." When I read that, I thought that it wasn't how I remembered it. There are indeed requirements, but none of them explicitly disallow Menards from building their new store before finding a new use for the old one.
Here's a PDF that you can download of the actual agreement from both 2005 and 2007. The first one was regarding Menards potentially moving to Elmore, and the second one has to do with the site on North Brady.
Download the actual pdf here:
http://www.mediafire.com/file/ioytzmigjyr/Menard's DarkStore Agreement.pdf