Apartments proposed along Haddon alley

Wicker Park Apartments, west of alley behind Planned Parenthood (Brininstool + Lynch Ltd.)

East Village Association board meeting minutes, November 11, 2013
Submitted by Meghan Quinn

Preservation, Planning & Development: 1515-17 W. Haddon St.
Mark Sutherland came to discuss his proposed transit-oriented, mixed-use development at 1515 W. Haddon near the Blue Line Division stop. Sutherland currently owns 21 apartment buildings and has been given awards for landmarked projects.


Haddon Street west from Milwaukee Avenue

Sutherland feels that the market demands smaller apartments right now, and so proposes 8 studios, 24 one-bedroom units, 12 two-bedroom units and 1 large single-family unit in the top. This equals 44 units on floors 2 through 5, plus the 1 large unit on the 6th floor, totaling 45 units. Sutherland is aiming for LEED Silver certification, incorporating sustainable concepts such as solar, 50% green roof and electric vehicle parking.

David Brininstool of Brininstool + Lynch stated the architects are going for a light and airy feel with reflective metals on the exterior, and presented renderings of what the steel and cement building could look like. The height comes in at about 63 feet to the top of the 5th floor, and 73 feet to the top of the 6th floor, which is set back from the face of the rest of the building.

EVA President Neal McKnight said an effort should be made to incorporate larger units, possibly some three bedrooms to accommodate the possibility for families to live there. Concern was raised regarding the current safety of the area, and Scott Rappe suggested that a good building can change a location. Sixty people moving to the area as well as people coming to the real estate office on the ground floor could be a positive addition.

If everything goes as planned, Sutherland’s goal would be spring 2015 occupancy. At this time, rents could be expected around $1,300 for a studio, $1,500 for a one-bedroom and $2,100-2,500 for a two-bedroom unit.

For next steps, the developer will reconsider the unit mix to include some larger units. The EVA Preservation, Planning & Development committee and Sutherland’s group will keep in touch as the design progresses, and PPD will ultimately make a recommendation to the EVA membership.

Neighborhood planning & development discussion

Gary Wigoda, attorney and chairman of the Wrightwood Neighbors Planning Committee, came to discuss our recent ideas about the direction of the neighborhood.

He stated that while the city does have overlay districts in place, the planning department does not prefer them. We can work with the aldermen on zoning changes, but Wigoda suggests that the changes be large areas rather than piecemeal. He also suggests we look at existing overlay districts and notice that most deal with things such as setbacks, building heights, lot area differences and floor area ratio.

Board member Greg Nagel wants to use incentives and to promote development in the neighborhood in general, but doesn’t necessarily feel we should make it difficult for people to demolish something. Scott Rappe and many on the board have a desire to save valuable masonry buildings in the neighborhood, and feel that no masonry building in our neighborhood should be torn down.

The two most important next steps are:

  • To write a vision for the future of East Village. Then we can figure out specific strategies and action items for each vision statement on which we agree.
  • Collect data on the neighborhood such as demographics, housing stock, occupancy, type, value, etc.

December meeting

Though we sometimes skip the December membership meeting due to the holidays, it will be held this year on Monday, Dec. 2. See you at 7pm at the Happy Village, 1059 N. Wolcott Ave.

Holiday Party ideas

Board members will brainstorm places to hold this year’s holiday party. Smoke Daddy, Unite Urban Grill and Bow & Stern were brought up as possibilities.

Meeting commenced at 6:38pm at West Town Bakery & Diner, 1916 W Chicago Ave. Attendance: board members Neal McKnight, Scott Rappe, Meghan Quinn, Gladys Anselmo, Stephen Rynkiewicz, Rob Schickel, Tom Tomek; other attendees Rich Anselmo, Marjie Isaacson, Ronda Locke.

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