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December 30, 2022

Dear Neighbors,


As the 2022 Holiday Season comes to an end, the Lincoln Central Association is looking forward to the New Year and what lies in store for our community.

In January, LCA will join the other 43rd Ward neighborhood organizations to host an aldermanic candidate’s forum. The event, which will be held at Lincoln Park High School, will be a great opportunity to hear the candidates' positions on the issues which matter most to our community.

January is also the time that LCA will host its annual meeting where we’ll elect new members to the LCA Board of Directors. After a two-year hiatus, we look forward to holding this meeting in person and I hope you all can join us.

While the New Year offers new beginnings, it is also an opportunity to reflect on the past year and make plans to build on the momentum that’s been created. With some time off for the holidays, I have had time to reflect on all the great events that brought us together this year, like Howler at Bauler and Evening in the Garden, which both broke attendance records.

The success of these events and the strength of our community is due in large part to the volunteer work and community service of you all, and we cannot thank you enough for your support. 

From the Heart,

P. S. Do not hesitate to contact me at any time at [email protected] or 816-668-6775 if you would like to learn more about LCA or have neighborhood concerns.

• Recent LCA News •

Holiday Season in Lincoln Park

Thank you to everyone who attended Oz Park’s 6th Annual Holiday Tree Ceremony on December 3! It was a chilly, but beautiful night out at Oz Park.

The lights, the singers from Lincoln Park High School and all of our neighbors really kicked off the holiday season the right way. 

Get to Know the Candidates for 43rd Ward Alderman

Please join the 43rd Ward Alliance for an Aldermanic Forum on Tuesday, January 24th from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Lincoln Park High School. During this event, you will get to know the candidates for 43rd alderman and learn more about where they stand on issues that are important to you!


And don’t forget that the Chicago Municipal Election is on February 28!! Make your plan to vote now!

You're Invited to the LCA Annual Meeting!

Please save the date! LCA will be hosting our Annual Meeting on Thursday, January 26 at Belmont Village Lincoln Park (700 W Fullerton). All are invited to this free event where you will learn more about LCA and our neighborhood.


Each year at the Annual Meeting, an election is held to fill seats on the organization's Board of Directors which are open due to term expiration, or otherwise. The procedures for the election of Board members are outlined in the organization's bylaws on our website here.


More information, as well as the new members nominated to join the board, will be coming soon via email.

An Effort to Save a Historic Chicago Fire-Era Building

By Deirdre Graziano

The Lincoln Central neighborhood has long been considered a jewel within our city. It’s close to the lake and downtown amenities. Its streets offer a soothing canopy of trees. We have multiple play-lots, pocket parks and the blessing of our treasured green space, Oz Park. Our historic buildings have long placed this neighborhood in the gold-medal category of desirable neighborhoods within Chicago.


Neighborhoods change. Our neighborhood is no different than many gentrified areas which lost their racially and economically diverse neighbors. Teachers, firemen and other neighborhood-service workers who once lived here moved out. They could no longer live where they worked because affordable housing is eliminated every time a 19th century two- or three-flat is torn down, replaced by a single-family home or a side yard for play. Much of our population decline is the direct result of single-family home construction on lots that once contained two- and three-flats, buildings that offered affordable housing to many.


Currently, an historic three-flat at 2240 N. Burling Street is scheduled for demolition. It is “orange-rated” by the City, so there is a 90-day freeze on its destruction. Preservation Chicago is leading an effort to save the building, for its history and multi-family use. “The building is one of the last remaining survivors of the Chicago Fire era. Only a handful remain today of what was once an entire neighborhood of these beautiful buildings. Just two blocks beyond the flames of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, it was built in circa 1874 when Chicago was trying to recover from the destruction. Its delicate detailing reveals an unshaken optimism for the future despite the overwhelming difficulties of the time. And its three large, family-sized apartments reveal a utilitarian urgency to provide high-quality housing to the 100,000 Chicagoans who lost their homes at that time. This is one of three buildings on Burling that may be torn down to create a single family home.”

Lincoln Central Association supports this preservation effort. A petition from organized by Preservation Chicago has been established. We encourage our members to sign this petition here.

Saving historic buildings is a difficult process. The 90-day demolition delay ordinance has saved relatively few buildings compared to those that have been lost. The ordinance allows the Department and Planning and Development time to explore options, as appropriate to preserve buildings, including but not limited to landmark designation. We are hoping viable options will be found to save the 2240 N. Burling 


History of R-5 zoning 

The loss of affordability and historic buildings in our community was also influenced by a 2008 zoning change implemented by the city. A R-5 zoning overlay was created which allowed taller and deeper construction on a standard city lot. The overlay was and is unique to Lincoln Central Association. It does not exist in any of our sister neighborhoods. RANCH Triangle, Sheffield Neighborhood Association, Old Town, Mid-North and Wrightwood Neighbors do not have such zoning.


The R-5 zoning overlay was brought on by a developer’s lawsuit in 2008 ( The developer Al Hanna sued the city, arguing that the R- 4.5 zoning instituted at the behest of LCA was detrimental to the community's racial equity and affordable housing. Hanna asserted that a change from LCA’s R - 4.5 to R-5 zoning would result in greater racial equity and affordability within the neighborhood by allowing more affordable units to be built on a standard city lot.


Mr. Hanna’s argued that LCA’s R-4.5 zoning was “harmful and wrong, that R-4.5 zoning policies perpetuated racial, social and economic segregation and were unconstitutional; that enacting R-4.5 zoning ordinances deprived the City of desperately needed housing and population in order to create pockets of wealthy neighborhoods occupied by the rich, white and influential…” 


The city settled with Mr. Hanna and the R-5 zoning was overlaid on a swath of LCA. A zoning change — created to promote affordability and diversity—did just the opposite. Instead of more diversity in our community and more affordable units, LCA experienced a decline in both as well as a decrease in population,


The loss of diversity, the loss of affordability and the loss of population has social and economic consequences for our community. Diversity improves individual and collective quality of life for people of all races and income levels, both in the short-term and far into the future (Daily Beast US News, April 14, 2022). The loss of residents in our community affects the viability of our neighborhood stores and restaurants. 


We cannot change our past, but we can support more diversity and more affordability, and we can fight to save some of our heritage. 2240 N. Burling is worth saving.

Thank You to Our LCA Sponsors!

LCA is dedicated to inspiring people to join together for the social, cultural, and physical enrichment of our neighborhood, and our local businesses are a critical part of that! LCA is honored to work with local businesses to improve our neighborhood and promote their business! 


Thank You to Our Sponsors:

• Neighborhood News •

Community Invited to Join DePaul's Ray Meyer Fitness and Recreation Center

DePaul would like to invite the community to their Ray in the New Year Kickoff Event on Tuesday, January 3 from 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm. There will be facility tours, group fitness demos, information tables, programming (e.g. dodgeball, fitness challenges, golf, pickleball, basketball, swimming, etc.), and prize drawings for those who attend. Additionally, any community member who stops by will receive a complimentary pass that is good for one-time use at the facility.


Learn more about this free event here.

From the Heart is an award-winning newsletter published by Lincoln Central Association.

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