Chicago ward remap: East Village Association statement


November 18, 2011

The Honorable Richard F. Mell
Alderman 33rd Ward
3649 North Kedzie Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60618

Attn: Mr. Jaime Andrade
Re: East Village Association Ward Remap

Dear Mr. Mell:

The East Village Association (EVA) is a non-profit neighborhood organization with boundaries from Division Street to Chicago Avenue and from Damen Avenue to Milwaukee Avenue. EVA consists of individuals, families and businesses that live, work and operate in the East Village neighborhood. EVA has been actively working to improve our community for more than 30 years. This includes the efforts of hundreds of volunteers. Our organization writes to you to express our concerns regarding the impact of the current Ward remap on our community and on our mission. To understand our concern you must understand our mission.

EVA was organized:

• To provide an opportunity for those who live in, work in, or identify with the social or business interests of the area, to work together for the common good of the community with a positive community spirit;

• To work for a cleaner, safer neighborhood; To assemble and disseminate information about neighborhood conditions, ways to eliminate unwholesome and blighting features, quality and availability of public and private community services, the law pertaining to these matters, and resources available for developing plans for conservation, redevelopment, and general improvement of the community;

• To plan for the maintenance and improvement of both the physical and social environment of the community;

• To promote community discussion of these matters; To empower members to solve community problems.

With the City of Chicago Ward remap at hand, EVA believes to fulfill its mission and for our community to be properly represented that the entire neighborhood should be included in a single Ward. The EVA Board of Directors has concluded and formally requests that the entire area encompassing East Village Association should be included in the 32nd Ward currently represented by Alderman Scott Waguespack.

Alderman Waguespack best represents the interests of our community and has consistently worked in a productive and forthright manner with the EVA in an effort to achieve our stated goals. For example, when Alderman Waguespack took office, he established a clear set of expectations for development within the ward ('Zoning and Development Guidelines for the 32nd Ward') and a uniform procedure for considering new projects ('Developer Checklist for Initial Meeting'). The East Village Association recognized the value of these policies and officially adopted them as its own. This has closely aligned our community's vision for development with that of the 32nd Ward, and thus it would be beneficial if all of our community was included in the 32nd Ward

Over the past ten years, our community has been within 3 different wards, the 1st Ward, the 27th Ward and the 32nd Ward. These Wards are currently represented by Proco Joe Moreno, Walter Burnett Jr. and Scott Waguespack. As a result of being represented by 3 different Alderman we find it very difficult to develop plans and processes to fulfill the goals of EVA to improve our neighborhood.

Unfortunately, we have found that Alderman Moreno does not represent the interests of our community and the 1st Ward does not share a similar vision with EVA. We are concerned with Alderman Moreno’s lack of transparency and consultation with our community regarding, zoning, liquor control, business development and safety issues.

As an all volunteer organization it is critical that we have an open and constructive dialogue with our Alderman so as to preserve and properly allocate our resources. The EVA Board of Directors has determined that being entirely within the 32nd Ward will allow our organization to allocate its all volunteer resources in the most efficient manner to achieve our goals.

Very truly yours,

Mr. Greg Nagel
President of the East Village Association
On behalf of the entire Board of Directors of the East Village Association

cc
The Honorable Scott Waguespack
Alderman 32nd Ward
2657 North Clybourn Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60614

The Honorable Rahm Emanuel
Mayor City of Chicago
121 North LaSalle Street
5th Floor
Chicago, Illinois 60602

The Honorable Proco “Joe” Moreno
Alderman 1st Ward
2058 N. Western Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60602

The Honorable Walter Burnett, Jr.
Alderman 27th Ward
1463 W. Chicago Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60622

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