Planning, Preservation & Development Committee

by Scott Rappe

Pizza Hut Property

We have continued our advocacy for an appropriately scaled mixed-use development on the property formerly occupied by Pizza Hut. This month, the Committee learned that the property was sold for $4,850,000. Apparently the deal also included a portion of the Wendy’s parcel to the west, though the extent is not known at this time.

Alderman Flores has seen one round of drawings for the proposed development, a free-standing Walgreens which, we are told, he rejected. In a meeting with the Alderman, committee and board members observed that the present developer does not ‘get it’ and requested that the Alderman spread the word to other developers that this site holds potential for a denser, mixed-use, transit oriented development.

1916-24 West Winchester

Ranquist Development, Inc. has submitted an information package to the Planning, Preservation & Development Committee regarding its proposed new development on Chicago Avenue, at Winchester. (Bob Ranquist & Jack Guthman will attend the October 2, meeting to discuss Ranquist Development's request to change the zoning at 1916-24 West Chicago Avenue) See article in this newsletter.

Polish Triangle

EVA received was contacted by the Pulaski Park Neighbors Association regarding the fountain in the Polish Triangle. They have requested that the alderman temporarily remove the park benches from the fountain Triangle to discourage vagrants from loitering and asked for EVA’s support.The EVA Board discussed this at the September 10 board meeting and decided against this request. While sympathetic to the poor condition of the area and the concerns of the PPNA, board members were unified in the opinion that removing the benches would not be the best solution, even temporarily.

The general feeling was that removal of the benches was a severe action that would diminish the value of the Triangle further and make the park even less welcoming than it currently is.There was also some concern that removing the benches might not solve the problem and that more vigilance on the part of the police might be a better strategy. Finally, many people felt that once the benches are gone, they would never be returned.

As always, East Village Association members should feel free to offer other issues for consideration by the committee.

Scott A. Rappe, Chairperson
srappe@kplusr.com