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ChicagoNorth Side

The second coming of a Robert AM Stern high-rise to Chicago

Grand & Peshtigo

Crain’s Chicago Real Estate Daily is reporting that Related Midwest has selected “renowned New York architect Robert A.M. Stern” to design a high-rise on a site at the southwest corner of Peshtigo Ct and Grand Ave. Crain’s notes that “Mr. Stern’s firm has never designed a high-rise built in Chicago.” The writer makes no mention ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on May 8, 2014
ChicagoNorthwest Side

Obscure Chicago neighborhoods – Brynford Park

Brynford Park

Brynford Park is an easy-to-overlook, tiny pocket of Chicago’s North Park neighborhood. The neighborhood takes its name from its southeastern corner intersection of Bryn Mawr Ave and Pulaski Rd, formerly Crawford Ave. Brynford Park is a mere six square blocks hosting just over 100 1920s-era homes, many in a Dutch Colonial style on 30-foot and ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on March 24, 2014
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Development laugh lines, Old Town edition

Clark & North

Developer Howard Weiner is proposing to build an 11-story residential and commercial building at the southwest corner of North Ave and Clark St, adjacent to the shuttered Village Theater. If you’re at all familiar with the location, this excerpt from yesterday’s Crain’s article will provide enough amusement to carry you through the weekend: I think ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on October 25, 2013

City making moves on massive South Loop site

South Loop

Greg Hinz at Crain’s Chicago Business is reporting that Mayor Emanuel is making preparatory moves to gain control of a large site in the South Loop once owned by “convicted power broker” Tony Rezko. Hinz pegs the site at 63 acres, but a previous Crain’s report refers to it as 62 acres. The site had ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on July 9, 2013
North ShoreLake Forest

Will a soft Lake Forest market lead to granny flats?

Lake Forest public library

Trib Local recently reported that Lake Forest is considering amending its zoning code to allow second living units, e.g. coach houses and garage apartments, on single-family properties. According to a news release for the public forum that the Tribune covered: Current economic conditions have made the sale of larger properties, with historic homes and outbuildings, ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on February 26, 2013
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

Wolf Point proposal advances to Plan Commission

Wolf Point Chicago

Forty-second Ward Alderman Brendan Reillly’s email newsletter this morning outlines a list of changes negotiated to the proposal for the redevelopment of Wolf Point before getting to the bottom line: Reilly’s blessing. The plan will be on the agenda for the Chicago Plan Commission’s November 27 meeting. If approved by the Plan Commission the final ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on November 9, 2012

Zoning, title insurance and nasty possibilities

East Garfield Park

Real estate developers have been known to grant zoning laws all the respect that dogs give fire hydrants. I can recall instances where a Park Ridge developer built one more 16-unit garden apartment building than his project’s zoning allowed and another where a city developer’s high-rise exceeded its zoning allotment by two stories. “Contractor error” ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on August 30, 2012
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

New apartment Fitz and starts

Atrium Village aerial rendering

FitzGerald Associates‘ email newsletter arrives with the subject line “All the News That’s Fitz,” making the architectural firm a fit target for headline puns. Yesterday’s edition alerted us to final City Council zoning approvals for two projects – one that was familiar (Atrium Village, albeit with an unfamiliar rendering, above) and another that wasn’t (200 ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on August 9, 2012
ChicagoWest / Southwest

Prices go off the rails at Austin’s Galewood Crossings

Galewood Crossings Chicago

It’s been nearly six years since we first looked in at The Enclave at Galewood Crossings, the 15-acre residential portion of a 50-acre mixed-use development on a former railroad site in Austin. The site is nearly a mile east of the Galewood neighborhood. When we checked in for an update two years ago one of ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on April 5, 2012

Quote of the day – 1,000s of professionals in scores of storefronts

Washington Park streetscape Chicago

The Tribune and the Sun-Times reported on Ald. Proco Joe Moreno‘s proposal, which passed the City Council Zoning Committee, to allow a portion of commercial space to be used for residences. From the Sun-Times: Moreno predicted that “thousands” of professionals would take advantage of the change, filling scores of vacant storefronts and building the city’s ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on March 23, 2012
ChicagoNorth Side

Would you pay $289 a buildable square foot for vacant land in Lake View?

3804 N Janssen Chicago

You’ll find a number of multi-million dollar homes north of Addison along Wayne and Janssen. The home pictured above at 3804 N Janssen, for example, had once been listed for more than $3.5M and just came back on the market at an asking price of $3.295M. The 6-bedroom home, with 5 full and 2 half ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on January 13, 2012
North ShoreEvanston

Quote of the day – B&Bs on every Evanston block

300 Church St Evanston

Trib Local is reporting that Evanston may be on the verge of approving its first bed and breakfast. The proposed lakefront site, a 6-bedroom, 4 ½ bath home at 300 Church St, had been on and off the market for nearly 3 years and was recently listed at $2,375,000. It is currently under contract. Evanston ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on September 19, 2011
ChicagoFar North

Streamlining zoning decisions in the 48th Ward

View from Foster Ave beach

Today’s e-mail from 48th Ward Ald. Harry Osterman led me indirectly to the 48th Ward Community Process for Zoning and Land Use Approvals (PDF). The process, which is “intended to benefit the community and the incoming business by streamlining the decision making process …” requires, among other things, that an applicant for a zoning or ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on September 16, 2011

Roommate tip – ask to see the lease

Lake View scene

Most Chicago landlords have a “one roommate per bedroom” policy. And most Chicago tenants have never read their lease. If you’re scanning Craigslist’s Roommate section you’ll often see ads for doubling and tripling-up in bedrooms. Keeping the rent down is all good, right? Here’s a typical ad: Looking for a female roommate to share the ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on July 11, 2011
ChicagoSouth Side

$55K goes missing; zoning change expected in Little Village

The subplots and twists are mind-splintering in David Roeder’s report on a proposed not-a-flea-market at 3200 S Kedzie in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood. The cast of characters includes Alderman Munoz, “disgraced former Alderman Ambrosio Medrano” and an attorney relating “a damned lie” that may well be the truth. A cynic might simplify the tale thusly: ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on July 28, 2010