Department Programs, Projects & Initiatives | June 29, 2017
Mayor announces $4 million in Neighborhood Opportunity Fund grants for South, West side businesses

The funding will support 32 development projects, including a vegan restaurant in Chatham, a plant nursery in North Lawndale and an art gallery in Humboldt Park. The recipients were selected from more than 700 applications to the program, created by Mayor Emanuel through reforms to the City’s downtown FAR bonus system in the spring of 2016. Additional Neighborhood Opportunity Fund grant awards will be announced in the coming months.

Proposed land use reforms would enhance the North Branch, other city business corridors

Recommended by the "North Branch Framework" plan and introduced to City Council Wednesday, the proposals would rezone portions of the North Branch corridor to accommodate opportunities for mixed-use development, create a new Industrial Corridor System Fund that would support industrial development projects citywide, and expand the downtown FAR bonus system. Public meetings will take place in July regarding the zoning amendments.

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Mixed-use redevelopment proposal selected for Michael Reese site

Planned by a community-based development team and selected in response to a DPD Request for Proposals, the 10 million-square-foot project includes technology-oriented commercial spaces, retail uses, homes and a hotel to be developed over the next 10 years.

Commissioner Reifman talks equitable neighborhood development, innovative funding tools and billions of dollars

Reifman's remarks about Mayor Emanuel's second-term priorities were delivered this month during a comprehensive overview of local development activity during a luncheon at the City Club of Chicago. Watch the presentation here.

Vintage State Street high-rises to be reborn with residential, retail uses

The two former office buildings at 202 and 220 S. State St., along with a historic storefront at 214 S. State, are part of a $141 million adaptive re-use proposal by Chicago-based CA Ventures. The approximately 350,000-square-foot mixed-use project was selected through a formal Request for Proposals issued by DPD this spring on behalf of U.S. General Services Administration, which has owned the properties since 2007.

City small business grants keep Charter Steel on the West Side

The North Lawndale company recently reinvested in its steel distribution facility at Kostner Avenue and Roosevelt Road through DPD's Small Business Improvement Fund. Company officials say without the program, it may have been forced to relocate more than 90 jobs to Indiana
$5 million loan will preserve 10th building under Mayor Emanuel's SRO Preservation Initiative

The Marshall Hotel at 1232 N. LaSalle St. would be rehabilitated for residents earning up to 60 percent of the area median income through the zero-interest loan, enabling a rehab that will create 90 units. Additional City support for the $31.8 million project by Michaels Development Co. includes $1.5 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credits and $3 million in historic tax credit equity. The SRO initiative launched in late 2014.

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Chicago's early skyscrapers to be considered for world heritage list

The nine Loop buildings were added this spring to the United States’ World Heritage Tentative List, a prestigious honor that recognizes their innovative roles involving early high-rise design and construction. The list, which hadn't been updated since 2008, could lead to their inclusion on UNESCO's World Heritage List of humanity's most culturally relevant sites and structures.

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Next West Loop design guidelines meeting set for July 13

DPD's West Loop project team is currently working on a set of draft design guidelines that will help guide future growth in the neighborhood. The next public meeting on the proposed guidelines is set for 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 13, at Builtworlds, 1260 W. Madison St.

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Passive park project proposed for West Town

A new public park would be developed on City-owned land in West Town through a proposal introduced this week to City Council. Planned for the southwest corner of Milwaukee Avenue and Erie Street, the one-acre park would be built with $643,000 in Open Space Impact Fees.

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Community  Development Commission Approvals
TIF assistance OK'd for Washington Park artist residences

The Community Development Commission approved the $6.5 million in TIF to help replace vacant land at 63 E. Garfield Blvd. with 49 units of affordable housing. The $22 million project from Brinshore Development would be marketed toward artists and families. The City support, which includes the sale of two plots of City land for $1 each, could be introduced to City Council this summer. 
Commission on Chicago Landmarks Approvals
Quincy Street 'L' station on track for landmark status

Built in the 1890s, the Chicago Transit Authority facility in the Loop remains one of the city's best preserved, original elevated stations. The preliminary recommendation by the Landmarks Commission could be finalized this summer in conjunction with a proposed $18.2 million renovation plan by the CTA.
Chicago Plan Commission Approvals
2835 W. Belden Ave.
Barry Sidel's plan for Logan Square includes a six-story transit-oriented development with 100 residential units and 30 parking spaces. The development will replace two vacant buildings and a vacant lot along the Blue Line tracks. Ten affordable units will be provided on site.
845 W. Madison St.
The John Buck Co.'s plan for 586 residential units in the West Loop includes a pair of 17-story buildings and low-rise townhomes. The $200 million project calls for a Neighborhood Opportunity Bonus system payment of $2.31 million and 59 affordable units on site.
1201 E. 60th St.
The University of Chicago's institutional project
in Hyde Park will create 97,000 square feet of academic and conference space along the Midway Plaisance.
5438 N. Sheridan Road
Greystar's plan for a surface parking lot in Edgewater includes a 16-story, 174-unit mid-rise. A total of 18 affordable units will be provided on site.
1350 N. Lake Shore Drive
Draper & Kramer's plan to replace the Gold Coast's only lakefront parking lot includes 58 two- and three-bedroom units in an eight-story building. Forty-two parking spaces would be provided on site. 
4621 S. Lake Park Ave.
Plan Rise's proposal within the Lakefront Protection District in Kenwood includes a four-story residential property with eight units and eight parking spaces.
Development By the Numbers

20 billion

At least $20 billion worth of investment is underway in Chicago, the Tribune reports. Current "mega projects" include Vista Tower, Wolf Point, Riverline and Union Station.


Chicago ranked 7th on A.T. Kearney's index of global cities, behind only New York among cities in the Americas. The index ranks the most influential cities worldwide.


Developers are expected to complete 8,000 new apartments in downtown Chicago by the end of 2018, according to Appraisal Research Counselors. 
DPD Commissions and Boards Meeting Agendas & Minutes