41st Ward Zoning Advisory Committee expected to vote next month on proposals




by BRIAN NADIG

The 41st Ward Zoning Advisory Committee is expected to vote next month on proposals for single-family homes in Norwood Park and Edison Park.

At the committee’s March 2 meeting, members heard proposals to covert a former dental office at 6807 W. Raven St. into a one-story house and to subdivide an approximately 87-foot-wide lot at 7021-25 N. Overhill Ave. for two homes. The board’s next meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 6, at the Olympia Park fieldhouse, 6566 N. Avondale Ave.

Plans call for the house on Raven to have a raised deck in the rear and two outdoor parking spaces, which would be accessible from a driveway on North Newark Avenue. The approximately 4,000-square-foot parcel is less than a block from the Northwest Highway commercial corridor and next to a three-story, six-unit apartment building at 6811 W. Raven St.

In January city inspectors issued 14 citations in connection with renovation work which reportedly was being done to the 80-year-old frame office building, according to the city Department of Buildings Web site. A stop work ordered was issued because there reportedly was no construction permit for the project.

Alderman Anthony Napolitano’s chief of staff Chris Vittorio said that it is not clear why B2-2 zoning was being sought for the project when it would be allowed under the more restrictive B2-1 zoning. "There was a concern that some day they may knock this down and go bigger," Vittorio said.

Both B2-1 and B2-2 zoning permit ground-floor residential uses in a business district, but B2-1 allows one residential unit per 2,500 square feet of land while B2-2 allows one unit per 1,000 square feet of land. The existing B1-1 zoning of the site permits ground-floor residential uses.

Project officials offered to sign a restrictive covenant which would be attached to the deed for the property and which would limit the size of a home of the site, but some committee members said that the issue may be best managed with a B2-1 zoning designation, Vittorio said.

Plans call for the Overhill site to be rezoned from RS-2 to RS-3 and for the two homes to have garages with driveways in the front. An existing single-family home on the site would be demolished.

Each of the two-story houses would have 43 feet 7 inches of frontage on Overhill, but the existing zoning requires 50-foot lots, Vittorio said. "With RS-2 they can’t get the two houses in there," he said.

Project officials told the committee that the average frontage on the east side of the 7000 block of Overhill is about 46 feet and that 23 of 37 homes on the block do not conform to frontage requirements, Vittorio said.

One resident expressed concern that the two homes looked too similar on a rendering, and project representatives agreed to make some exterior design changes, Vittorio said. Each house would have a rear deck, an open front porch and a basement.

The committee makes recommendations on zoning issues to Napolitano. Its members are representatives of neighborhood associations.

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