Paving In Pursuit Of Profits?

By Scott A. Rappe

The ongoing construction at Division Street’s newest restaurant, Boundary, has moved to the public way. East Villagers were recently horrified to see two fenced tree pits
removed and paved to provide a larger seating area for the restaurant’s
outdoor café. This is an egregious usurpation of public property for private profit.

Long before this became the City’s hottest destination, private citizens fought to have those tree pits installed to beautify a desolate stretch of Division Street. Those fences were installed at taxpayer expense and were maintained for years by the East Village Association members at its annual spring cleanup.

Like parkways throughout Chicago, the responsibility for planting and maintenance
of these little patches of green space rest with the adjacent property owners. This
responsibility does not include removing them. Although many have been abandoned,
over the years individuals have adopted tree pits to give them the care they
deserve.

According to Alderman Flores’ office, representatives of Boundary claim that the City
approved the removal of the tree pits. Chief of Staff Raymond Valadez has requested
a copy of this approval.