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Old Posted Jul 17, 2013, 1:08 PM
emathias emathias is offline
Adoptive Chicagoan
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: River North, Chicago, Illinois
Posts: 5,157
I was at the board meeting for my condo association last night. I live across the alley from where 707 N Wells is proposed, and two of the buildings in my association would directly abut it.

One of the owners in my building who is a lawyer said that there is some neighborhood resistance to it or "input" on design suggestions.

Two of the items I actually agree with - it's supposed to have over 50 parking spaces and a restaurant space, but the alley it would use is a dogleg alley that is very narrow. I think it would cause a lot of conflict with the other buildings, especially mine. My preferred resolution of that issue would be to remove any parking requirements entirely and see how few the developer would be comfortable building.

The other item I agree with is that some neighbors have asked them to design it so that the front of the property aligns with the existing building to form a street wall instead of the disjointed arcade thing they have in the current design. I hope the developer at least considers that.

Some of the other objects are that one of the groups actually said the design evoked the Metropolitan Corrections Center on Van Buren, which I think is absurd (although it does have a few slotty windows of that type). They also asked for a shadow study. And there were a few other objections that are more standard-issue nimby things.

The lawyer who showed us what other neighbors have done said he doesn't think there will be much chance of big changes in the design since it's built within current zoning and the developer already owns the land, but seemed somewhat hopeful that maybe something can be worked out with the alley issues.
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