Augusta dairy, St. Boniface next steps

Developer plans 12 condo units at 1936-44 W. Augusta Blvd., razing building built in 1881.

Update: The City Council on April 13 denied a demolition permit for the historic property at 1936-44 W. Augusta Blvd. "My office has been in conversation with the current owners," Ald. Brian Hopkins told aldermen. "They have been negotiating in good faith. They believe there's a way to save the structure. We need more time to continue those negotiations."

East Village Association board minutes for April 11, 2016, by Daniel Navarro

Welcome
  • Peter Gariepy and KK Goh in touch to transfer treasury responsibility
  • Membership list may pass to secretary
Commercial Park Earth Day Event
  • April 23 cleanup, no kids' activities, looking for assistance
  • Looking to have a block party on Rice, maybe work together
  • Flier on Facebook pages
  • Getting money from various locations, looking for volunteers
  • Ald. Proco Moreno also posted a clean and green for April 16
Augusta Dairy Update
  • Group should write a letter on both this and St. Boniface
  • Last Thursday the owners of 1936-44 W. Augusta Blvd. property threatened to sue the city for spot zoning
  • Developer met with Ald. Brian Hopkins and committed to saving first floor façade but won't save inside building. Developer offered to reconstruct any façade damage. New architect Space will submit design proposal to EVA and alderman
  • Initial plan is no retail on first floor and 12 condo units, razing building built in 1881 but saving 1920s façade
  • Suggestion made if enclosing structure more, then should try to restore façade back to original format
  • Catherine Garypie - If landmark commission stated building was not contributing to district, then alderman has right to put hold on for 90 days and 1 procedural stay before it goes up to City Council to ensure that it is contributing
  • Mike VanDam - Are there other properties that we should proactively protect? Neal McKnight - Anything that is orange rated
  • Gariepy - Has alderman accepted to remove the proposal to save the façade? McKnight- I believe so
  • Dan Johnson - How will this go with the folks that want to keep it as is? Foote - I think it will be accepted as a partial loss, not a total loss
  • Johnson - Option to either accept that will save the façade, or stand firm to keep building as is and maybe have a total loss
  • Scott Rappe - Have they made an actual proposal? Foote - not yet
  • Rappe - Space has the architects to save the 1881 portion and we should push to have them attempt to save the 1881 building
  • Rich Anselmo - I don't want a repeat of Roots, the guy who lives 2 buildings north will lose sun. Lost control over Roots, anxious about losing control over Augusta Dairy. Brian Foote - doesn't seem to be a concern here
  • Foote - Sounds like there is nothing more that we can do progressively but allow them to move forward. McKnight - Just be prepared to review the design
  • Wednesday is the meeting; he needs to put something together for the alderman. Our input on design will be after the fact as they still need to go thru the landmark commission
  • Foote - Is he asking for rezoning? McKnight - I think he must to get residential on first floor
  • Johnson - Do we just cool our heels until Thursday? Foote - I think we need to discuss our position and city procedures with the alderman
  • Steve Rynkiewicz - Are we being asked to determine if the historical portion is the façade and not the 1881 building? Foote - Not at all
  • Anselmo - Going back to point VanDam was making, we should look into expanding the historical district and change the rating of these buildings. Johnson - Yes, maybe we should make that a long-term goal
  • Johnson- Should we form a subcommittee to talk about these types of long-terms goals? Who would like to start the subcommittee? VanDam volunteered
1108 N. Ashland Update
  • McKnight - Proposal to do swap to save structures; the attorney has taken to client to see if that can happen, will get back tomorrow but this will change the date and timing
  • Foote - Demo came on schedule and a conversation was had to save the building from Chopin Theater and through this discussion
1019 N. Wolcott Update
  • Foote - It is a residential district and owner wants to find a mechanism to be able to run a business out of it. She wants to upzone the lot to get the license, then downzone the lot so that she can be grandfathered in. She has talked to many lawyers to discuss this
  • Gariepy - Is this common that residential areas get upzoned, then downzoned? Anselmo - It is unheard of
  • Garypie - Do we know about how her neighbors are dealing? Foote - She is already doing this and she was informed that she should go out and tell neighbors what she is doing and ask the neighbors what they think
  • McKnight - She was told that the city would issue a bed-and-breakfast license "today" but she would be in violation of a B&B license. She should get her immediate neighbors to sign off
  • VanDam - It is fair if every other zoning change requires neighbor signatures. McKnight - No, only liquor licenses require neighborhood support
  • Foote - I asked what is the benefit for the community? Garypie - Ownerwas saying building is a historical part of the neighborhood
  • Rynkiewicz - We should make this an aldermanic meeting and invite people on the block where she can make her statement
  • Johnson - Should we reach out to Hopkins and have him reach out or make this a more hyperlocal issue with the people on the block?
  • General opinion was that the neighbors should have buy-in and support; Foote stated she should reach out and obtain support then come together with alderman and others to discuss. If all the neighbors agree, then it would be difficult to put down
  • Foote - We should coordinate a response to her and suggest how she should move forward
Neighbors of St. Boniface asks for support to preserve the church at 1358 W. Chestnut St.

St. Boniface Update
  • Johnson - Neighbors of St. Boniface reached out to ask us to ask if we wanted to put together an official letter of support
  • VanDam - I think their mission statement to save church went too far in saying if that church is knocked down then single-family homes should replace it
  • Anselmo - It is the fault of the Archdiocese that the building was poorly maintained and that it should be up to them to restore?
  • Johnson - We need to tell them they need to save the property and inform them of a position we are supporting
  • Foote - Currently there is no proposal, just the hope that someone will invest before it gets demolished
  • Gariepy - Is this something we should simply take a position that we are in favor of preservation and nothing else? Foote - I think there is nothing that we can react to besides that we are in favor of preservation
  • Johnson- We continue to advocate for the preservation - Does anyone want to write that Letter? Rappe - Past letters state that position. Dan - If we can attach previous letters that would help
  • Rynkiewicz - No movement on our end to help save/change zoning
Windy City Mini Market Response
  • Johnson has been working on it writing the response
  • McKnight - Attorney Sam Maragos was in Moreno's office, was asked by Moreno and McKnight responded that we were working on it. VanDam wanted to change plan of operation to add outer design
  • Anselmo - Liquor moratorium would be to Wood to Ashland; do we think there would be other buildings that would apply to open liquor? McKnight - It is a grocery license, so would have to go to C zoning. Johnson - Moreno is in process of lifting moratorium on Division. He may lift without us doing anything
  • Garypie - Is the ball in our court at this point? Johnson - Yes. Catherine - I am not sure that we want the store to have a liquor license at all
  • Rynkiewicz - If a plan of operation is the best way to control licensee, then how will it be monitored and enforced? Can we have an audit process?
  • McKnight - Let's have someone go in and have an honest conversation with Moreno to ask his intentions on moratoriums
May Meeting Speakers
  • Does anyone have any ideas of a speaker? Dollop? McKnight - Ask guy who opened gallery across from Black Dog Gelato

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