The city may have backed off its plan in Lincoln Square’s eminent domain showdown, but there are still lingering questions about the nature of the proposal and the community’s reaction. Ben Joravsky breaks down the outcome of this David-and-Goliath duel in the Chicago Reader‘s Clout City blog. It’s worth a read if you’re still unsure of what exactly went down over the last few weeks.
[Ald. Gene] Schulter contended that the commercial strip, with its booming residential base, was starting to attract the interest of big-box chains. By beating the big boxes to the punch, he said, his plan would actually protect small businesses and help keep the community free of too much traffic and congestion. Sure, in this case protecting small businesses meant threatening them with government seizure of their property. But the declaration of eminent domain alone would help keep the Best Buys at bay: there’s no market for land the city can snatch at will.