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January 2021 Newsletter 
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Welcome 2021 and Welcome 3 New Board Members!

 The South Loop Neighbors begins the New Year with a Planning session by the Board of Officers for SLN, with events plotted out for the entire year.   This year's planning session will be enhanced with the addition of 3 new Board members to the SLN Board! In addition to the the incumbent officers being re-elected to the Board, Greg Borzo, Lana Reese and Jeremy Campbell have joined the Board. 

If you have suggestions on activities the Board should consider in the planning session, please submit them  HERE!

Thanks for your continued support! 

A Forgotten Chicago webinar: Revitalizing Chicago's South Loop
Thursday, January 28 at 7:00 pm

In 1970, Chicago's South Loop still contained an enormous amount of land related to railroad use. Much of this land would be redeveloped in the late 20th century, tremendously changing the character of the area. Join Forgotten Chicago and the Chaddick Institute for Metropolitan Development at DePaul University, for a virtual presentation on the decades-long changes to Chicago's South Loop that made it the vibrant residential, educational and commercial center it is today.

The presentation will include little-seen images of South State Street and the South Loop, including unrealized plans to revitalize this area and the 1991 creation of the Harold Washington Library Center. There is no charge to attend this virtual event but advance registration is required on the Chaddick website.


One Central still being discussed
The prospects for the massive One Central development became no less hazy during an online meeting Jan. 25 hosted by the city's Dept. of Planning and Development and Third Ward Ald. Pat Dowell. The developer still has not actually filed a Planned Development application, but in December Chicago adopted new guidelines calling for more meetings early in the process for proposed megadevelopments. 

Landmark Development's $20 billion One Central project envisions skyscrapers as tall as 89 stories, a transit center, and more than 9000 residential units in some 20 million square feet of buildings. The base would be a 30-acre platform above the Metra tracks near Soldier Field. 

Some changes to the project have been made since previous presentations. Changes include moving proposed high-rises to the eastern edge of the site to set them further away from existing Museum Park building, and retaining privately owned "Mark Twain Park" rather than building on it.

City and state leaders have so far been unwilling to publicly reject outright a project promoted by a developer with enough Springfield clout to get special provisions enabling the scheme included in the must-pass 2020 budget legislation. That bill cleared the way for the developer to seek federal grants, but did not commit to providing any state funding. Now the state is grappling with a nearly $4 billion deficit. "With the pandemic's economic turmoil upending state budgets around the country, it would be a challenge for any state to provide the significant amount this developer is seeking," Pritzker spokeswoman Emily Bittner said in a statement to the Tribune. "The state faces tremendous challenges and our efforts will focus on rebuilding in the aftermath ofthe pandemic, supporting residents hardest hit by the disease and helping small businesses get back on their feet."

Bittner also said that the governor's office has not seen a study that demonstrates the need for the transit hub. Chicago DOT officials noted during the meeting that it has many unanswered questions about the transit hub. Extension of Metra BNSF trains to the site no longer seems to be part of the scheme, and work is proceeding that will actually take Amtrak trains off the tracks that pass through the site. What lines an expensive and unsightly new CTA stub would connect with is never discussed, and was obscured by building renderings in the presentation materials. CTA and Metra have politely but noncommittally said "we'll look at whatever plan is presented."

The developer asserts that the public investment would be a good investment, with $78 billion in "new tax revenues and other economic impacts" for the state, another $60 billion for the city and "$14 gillion" for Cook County. Those figures come from an analysis prepared for the developer by AECOM, an engineering firm. The developer also claims the transit hub would somehow "bring an estimated 78,000 new jobs to the South Side."

Ald. Dowell opened the meeting by stating that her support for One Central "is not a done deal. There are no backroom shenanigans going on." 

The full two-hour meeting can be watched at

Two-towers & a grocery at Harrison/Wabash
In early December, developer Interforum proposed a large new development at 525 S. Wabash, replacing a parking garage and surface parking lot. The new complex, designed by BKV Group, would include two towers: one of 36 stories housing 516 apartments, and the other rising 23 stories with 262 apartments and 314 hotel rooms. A parking and retail base would include a grocery store. It isn't known which supermarket chain, if any, has committed to the location.

Revised scheme for 1000M
After losing their financing last summer, the New York developer behind the stalled Michigan Avenue highrise called 1000M is trying to restart the project with a new plan that increases the number of units in the building to 738-likely rentals-from the previously approved 506. (The project previously marketed had only 421 condos). A zoning application was recently filed with the city council seeking permission for the change. The size and exterior of the building would stay largely the same, though its height would decline slightly, from 832 feet to 805 feet.  In a statement provided to the Tribune in December, Time Equities said "the exterior of the building would remain substantially as previously approved. Our hope would be to commence construction next year, but this will depend on economic conditions and the availability of financing."

Although lenders have pulled back during the  pandemic-and downtown apartment occupancies and rents have plunged-some developers have managed to finance new projects, betting that the market will bounce back by the time they finish construction.

1420 S Mich dispensary
Just three days before the location was to be considered by the city's Zoning Board of Appeals, the application to operate a cannabis dispensary at 1420 S. Michigan was withdrawn, as a major New York-based cannabis firm announced plans to acquire the applicant, Chicago's Midway Dispensary. Ald. Dowell had on Dec. 6 announced her "overwhelming opposition" to a dispensary at the address. Her letter cited the location on the same block as St. Mary's Church and School as violating the spirit-if not the letter-of the city ordinance. The letter also cited the cash nature of the business, making it a potential target for looters; the expected attractiveness to tourists visiting downtown hotels and attractions; and inadequate space and parking for the potential number of customers. 

South Loop Development Roundup 
A reminder: Our Sept. 16 online meeting covered the development and planning issues active in the neighborhood. If you weren't able to attend, you can view the entire presentation on YouTube.

The latest on all South Loop projects can always be found at


      Additional resources can be found by clicking here!

Covid 19 

Chicago Moves to Tier 1 Mitigations from Tier 2

Chicago moved to Tier 1 Mitigations effective January 23, 2021. These restrictions are the most up to date and take precedence over the industry-specific guidelines if there are points of contradiction.
Overview of Tier 1 Mitigation Measures
Restaurants and Bars
  • Will be able to reopen indoors at lesser of 25% or 25 people per space.
  • Food must be available at all times in order to offer indoor service. This means that bars, taverns or breweries without a food license can reopen indoors as long as they partner with a food establishment so that food is available to patrons at all times (e.g., making menus available and allowing delivery, allowing patrons to order from third-party delivery services).
  • Table size will be limited to no more than four people per indoor table and six people per outdoor tables
  • Outdoor service can continue under existing regulations, including tables that are within eight feet of walls that are at least 50% open
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times, except when patrons are seated and actively eating or drinking
  • Patrons must be seated whenever they are eating or drinking
  • Tables must be six feet apart
  • Indoor service limited to no more than two hours
  • All bars and restaurants must close at 11pm
Event Venues
  • Events will be limited to the lesser of 25 guests or 25% of overall room capacity both indoors and outdoors
  • Events will be able to serve food or drinks, but indoor service guidelines must be followed:
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times, except when patrons are seated and actively eating or drinking
  • Four people per indoor table
  • Patrons must be seated whenever they are eating or drinking
  • Tables must be six feet apart
  • Indoor events must end at 11pm
Health and Fitness Centers
  • Indoor capacity will increase to 40%, with no more than 50 people within one area
  • Group classes of 15 or fewer can resume under the 40% capacity restriction
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times
Indoor recreation
  • Indoor capacity will increase to the lesser of 40% or 50 people
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times
Movie Theaters and Performance Venues
No capacity change from Tier 2 to Tier 1
  • Can operate indoors at 40% capacity, with no more than 50 people in any one space
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times
Retail Stores
No capacity change from Tier 2 to Tier 1
  • No change from Tier 2 to Tier 1: grocery stores and pharmacies can operate at 50% capacity, all other stores at 40% capacity
  • Face coverings must be worn at all time
No capacity change from Tier 2 to Tier 1
  • Can operate indoors at 25% capacity
  • Guided tours limited to 50 people
  • Groups limited to 10 people
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times
Personal Services
No capacity change from Tier 2 to Tier 1
  • No change from Tier 2 to Tier 1: 40% capacity, with no more than 50 people in any one space
  • Face coverings can be removed only for services that require their removal
Places of worship
No capacity change from Tier 2 to Tier 1
  • No change from Tier 2 to Tier 1: 40% capacity, with no more than 50 people in any one space
  • Special events capped at no more than 10 people
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times
Details on the full regulations will be posted at

For more info on Covid, please check the following sites.


During these unique times, the Chicago Public Schools have a website dedicated to assist in obtaining information. For info, click  CPS Info!

Live Local - Shop Local 
The South Loop is a vibrant neighborhood and as it continues to grow, it becomes increasingly more important for residents to support local small businesses. The benefits of shopping local are documented through a number of studies. 

South Loop Neighbors especially urges residents to shop at local businesses that have partnered with the South Loop Neighbors as Community Builders. Community Builders are businesses that are members of the SLN and who recognize that a partnerships between SLN and local businesses creates an optimal environment for our neighborhood to maintain and increase the vibrancy of the South Loop! Please visit our website to learn more about our Community Builders.  

  • Chick-fil-A (1106 S. Clinton)(opened 1/21/21)
  • Clean Your Dirty Face (1347 S. Michigan)

Opening Soon:
  • Overflow Coffee Bar (1449 S. Michigan)

  • South Loop Cleaners (1248 S. Canal). Pick up your property before January 31st.
  • Urban Grocers (737 S. State)
  • Tutto Italiano (501 S. Wells)

Community Builder Spotlight 

Located in the South Loop, Harbor is a purveyor of fine American dining presented by Chef Anthony Bernal. Harbor is now open and is located in the South Loop. Chef Anthony Bernal is serving high quality interpretations of classic dishes focusing on locally sourced ingredients, paying homage to the Great Lakes region. The beverage program features regional beers, enjoyable and balanced cocktails as well as a robust selection of wines from around the world.

Harbor's interior, designed by architect firm Barker/Nestor partnering with Ingrassia Design and built by Level Construction, reflects the sensibilities of the surrounding area while also acknowledging the region's storied past. Timberwolf Slabs from Crystal Lake, IL custom built the dining tables including a 17ft single slab live edge walnut table.
Guests can choose from different dining options whether sitting at the raw bar, dining by the fireplace, lounging at a banquette or watching Chefs prepare their food seated at the dining counter.

1312 S Wabash Ave
Chicago, IL 60605 
Hours: Sun-Thurs 4pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 4pm-11pm
Phone (312) 736-1570

Other Neighborhood Events

CAPS Meetings
Printer Row Park Advisory Council

*2021 PAC meeting schedule:
April 15 7PM, location TBD
July 15 7PM, location TBD
October 21 7PM, location TBD

*Printers Row Park is now accepting donations.  The PAC has opened a Foundation account which will allow your donation to be tax deductible. Please email Dorothy Mench for details.  

*Questions and/or comments can be emailed to the PAC and they hope to hear from you!

Grant  Park Advisory Council

Regular GPAC Meetings for 2021 will be held monthly on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6 pm. The next netting will be held on February 17,2021. Until further notice, all meetings will be virtual via Zoom. Further information and meeting registration can be obtained through  GPAC Facebook Page  

Columbia College 

Cristal Sabbagh: OOPS! POW! SURPRISE!
Glass Curtain Gallery-Columbia College Chicago
1104 S Wabash Ave, 1st Floor, Chicago, IL 60605 
March 8, 2021
Gallery Hours: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Capacity of gallery is 10 visitors, and masks are required.
Note: All programming for OOPS! POW! SURPRISE! will take place online. Thursday, November 12, 2020, 6-7 p.m.
Note: All programming for OOPS! POW! SURPRISE! will take place online.

Freedom From and Freedom To Presented in partnership with Elastic Arts
Thursday, February, 11, 2021, 6-7 p.m.
OOPS! POW! SURPRISE! Performance
With collaborators Erin Peisert, Scott Rubin, Keisha Janae, Ramah Malebranche, and Sara Zalek

Second Presbyterian Church 
Seeking volunteers for the Lunch Bag program. Volunteers arrive at 10:30 a.m., pack lunches and serve them to neighbors in need, concluding by 1:00 p.m. Everyone must wear a mask and keep strict social distancing. 

Annual Winter Coat Drive. Items needed include warm sweaters, hoodies, sweatshirts, mittens, scarves and socks. Donations may be dropped off at the north parking lot door of the church Tuesdays through Fridays, 9:30 a.m-- 1p.m. 

For more information, please contact the church office (312) 225-4951 or 
e-mail Pastor David Neff at

New Rotary Club Forming
Speaking of looking for volunteers, there is a Rotary Cub forming under a new format allowed by Rotary International. Instead of weekly meetings with speakers and presentations, this Club will be totally focused on community service projects, with members participating as their schedules allows.    

Click here to request for information. 
Thanks to All Who Attended!

Annual Members Meeting - Jan 5, 2021
Recap provided by Dearborn Express