Top cop to address station closings Tuesday


Supporters rally Oct. 10 at the Wood Street Station.

Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy will address concerns about the proposed 13th District consolidation at a 6:30 pm Tuesday community meeting in the Ukrainian Cultural Center.

The Wood Street district would be merged next spring into a new 12th District station three miles away at 1412 S. Blue Island Ave., according to the Chicago Journal.

Ruxbin courts wine, one flight up



Board meeting minutes for Oct. 10, 2011 submitted by Dana Palmer 

Vicki Kim of Ruxbin presented her group's new concept and its desire to lift the liquor moratorium.

The Ruxbin Kitchen team wants to open a wine shop [the address has been withdrawn from this post at Kim's request]. They are looking to acquire a packaged goods license only, and to sell wine but not serve it. The board examined whether the location is too close to Wells High School to qualify for a license, too close to other packaged goods stores, and too likely to attract more liquor sales.

Mayor on police closings: 'Doing what's right'


Chicago eliminates the 13th District police station at 937 N. Wood in the 2012 budget released Wednesday, a day after Save the 13th District Police Station petitions were delivered to City Hall.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel alluded to community resistance in his budget address:

Closing police districts has always been the third-rail of Chicago politics. But that should not stop us from doing what’s right. The three districts we’re closing are some of the oldest buildings in the system. In each case, they are being merged with one of our newest facilities. I’m convinced that in these districts safety will be enhanced.

As Emanuel delivered the news, according to WBEZ's Sam Hudzik, he looked directly at Ald. Joe Moreno, who opposes the station shutdown.

Moreno, EVA back Wood Street police station


A Columbus Day rally on the Walton Street sidewalk of the 13th District police headquarters drew about 100 station-house supporters, including Ald. Proco Joe Moreno.

The 1st Ward alderman suggested that renovations would build capacity in Mayor Rahm Emanuel's efforts to add beat officers in the 2012 city budget, which will be released Wednesday.

"What I told the mayor is that our community, our ward, should not be penalized for our success," Moreno said. "If the plan is to close the station I'm against it. If the plan is to replace the station I support it."

Monday rally on 13th District police station


A rally at 5:30 p.m. Monday aims to show support for continued operation of the 13th District police station.

Ald. Proco Joe Moreno plans to attend the event at the station house, 937 N. Wood, and will "make some comments about his support for strong police presence," said CAPS beat coordinator Molly Murray in an e-mail.

Circus comes to Commercial Park


By Ronda Locke

The Commercial Park Advisory Council has worked hard to be a part of the Circus in the Parks tour this year. On Oct. 15 & 16, Midnight Circus will give four shows in the little big top at Commercial Park, 1845 W. Rice St.

Proceeds will go toward improvements at Commercial Park and the two playlots the advisory council oversees, Snowberry (1851-57 W. Huron) and Superior (2101 W. Superior). Midnight Circus gives an incredible show, and I am certain it will be the most fun you will have doing good.

Performances are 2 & 5 pm Oct. 15 and 1 & 4 pm Oct. 16. Tickets are $15 at circusintheparks.org.

Contractor picks up 1st Ward recycling


By Marjorie Isaacson

East Village residents will notice new trucks in our alleys for the next six months. Our blue recycling carts will be collected by Waste Management instead of the Department of Streets & Sanitation.

Streets & San will still be collecting blue carts in some areas of the city, and a third private company, Metal Management Midwest, will be handling other areas. Mayor Emanuel authorized this trial to see if city employees can effectively compete with private companies.

A cost-benefit analysis will be conducted at the end of the trail to evaluate performance and costs. If the private contractors can handle recycling as effectively as the city workers at a lower cost, recycling services may be privatized to help cut into the city's massive budget deficit.

One change that residents may notice is that the private companies are authorized to leave orange warning stickers on recycling carts that contain materials that the recycling program does not accept. This type of feedback has been missing in Streets & San collections, at least from my inspections of blue carts. The private contractors will also be single-worker trucks, with the driver also emptying carts.

More details about this trial can be found in a Chicago Tribune article. While the promise of efficiency and economy is attractive, the real story will no doubt be nuanced. Waste Management helped design the blue bag recycling program that the city abandoned in 2008.

The Chicago Recycling Coalition provides additional analysis of factors that bear watching as this trial takes place, as well as a place to collect feedback about this experiment in managed competition.

Polish Triangle prompts call for unity; Chicago Bowl 'dead'


Native Foods Cafe, 1484 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Minutes of Oct. 3 membership meeting submitted by Stephen Rynkiewicz

Business minute
President Greg Nagel gave a brief summary of the East Village Association mission to start the meeting at 7:07 pm at the Happy Village.

Holladay Allen gave an introduction to the vegan restaurant Native Foods Cafe. The chain that Chef Tanya Petrovna started in 1994 in Palm Springs, Calif. has moved its headquarters to Chicago and the 1484 N. Milwaukee Ave. location, open from 11 am till 10 pm, is the new flagship. The chain donates a portion of revenues to local nonprofits during Tuesday and Wednesday community days.

Tough target: Wood Street police station



When residents gather at the Wood Street police station Wednesday for the monthly East Village CAPS meeting, crime is likely to take a back seat to the cop shop itself.

The 13th District station house at 937 N. Wood might be eliminated in next year's city budget, which Mayor Rahm Emanuel submits to the City Council this month. Although the location has been a target for a generation, reports of its potential lockdown have prompted circulation of an "Act Now" handbill in the neighborhood.

Wicker Park adds bike racks, street art


Bicycle racks and public murals are popping up along Division Street and Ashland and Milwaukee avenues, funded by the WPB Special Service Area #33, a tax district closely aligned with the Wicker Park and Bucktown Chamber of Commerce.

Adam Burck, the chamber's executive director, will speak on the groups' street-improvement efforts at Monday's East Village Association meeting.

Burck will field questions on issues such as improvements at the Polish Triangle park where Division, Ashland and Milwaukee meet. Neither the chamber nor WPB have weighed in on new development plans for 1601 W. Division. EVA has been reviewing proposals for the former Pizza Hut property, and has invited developers to present them Monday at the Happy Village, 1059 N. Wolcott.

The chamber supported EVA's 2007 proposal for a development geared to pedestrians and transit users. A WPB-funded Master Plan adopted in 2009 called for a 4- to 10-story mixed-use building there.

The bike racks and murals are current WPB projects. The agency donated 20 of the orange "WPB Rides" iron racks in July to the Chicago Department of Transportation for sidewalk installation, and arranged for bicycle street parking in front of the Flat Iron building at 1591 N. Milwaukee.

A jury awarded six artists $5,000 each to produce murals on privately owned buildings. The Orange Walls project, named for its watch-this-space scaffold tarps, wraps up Oct. 21.

The district also sponsored the weekly farmers' markets at the Polish Triangle, which ended this week, and Friday rush-hour street theater performances that continue through October.

Native Foods Cafe, a new Wicker Park restaurant at 1484 N. Milwaukee, gives a short presentation to open Monday's meeting at 7 p.m.