Status of Edgebrook, Edison Park plans uncertain after meeting canceled
by BRIAN NADIG
The Aug. 3 meeting of the 41st Ward Zoning Advisory Committee has been canceled, creating uncertainty about proposals to build a three-story condominium building in Downtown Edgebrook and a 44-unit residential building in Downtown Edison Park.
“After repeated attempts to contact both the developer for the property at 5306 W. Devon and the developer for the property at 6655 N. Oliphant Ave., we have received no response. We are hopeful that these developers will come back to present their revised plans,” Alderman Anthony Napolitano said in a July 28 message e-mailed to ward residents.
Napolitano’s chief of staff Chris Vittorio said that neither developer has submitted revisions since the last advisory committee meeting on June 1. At that meeting, it was reported that the proposed building on Devon would be reduced from four to three stories and that the developer of the Devon project was looking into switching his plans from apartments to condominiums.
Attempts to contact representatives of both developers, Ambrosia Homes Inc. for the Edgebrook project and Troy Realty for the Edison Park proposal, have been unsuccessful. Each project has been endorsed by the chamber of commerce in the respective community.
Called the “Bicycle Flats of Edgebrook” project, the 40-foot-tall building would be constructed on a 25-foot-wide, vacant lot, with five condominiums and one work/live arrangement space, and due to the site’s proximity to the Edgebrook Metra Station, the parking code reduces parking requirements for the site. Three parking spaces are planned, with bike storage for each unit and bike rack in front.
Requests have been made by some committee members and the Edgbebrook Community Association for more detailed plans, including showing how the side of the building would look and where the dumpsters and exterior lights would be located.
Vittorio said that there also have been inquiries about whether the building could be redesigned in order to lower the height a couple of extra feet. The building would be the tallest commercial structure along that stretch of Devon.
Due to the cost of revising the plans, allowing the advisory committee to take a preliminary vote on the general concept of the plan and then take a final vote after new detailed plans had been submitted was being considered, Vittorio said. There also had been consideration of hold a community meeting in Edgebrook so that additional input could be gathered on the proposal, he said.
Association president Jeff Manuel said that the association has not taken a stance on the proposal but that several members have concerns about the precedent-setting nature of the project, as it could lead to an influx of tall structures with little parking. “You’re counting on people with a $350,000 unit not having a car,” Manuel said.
Under the property’s B3-1 zoning, the height of a building is restricted to no higher than 38 feet and the number of residential units to one for every 2,500 square feet of land, but under the proposed B2-3 zoning, the height maximum would increase to 50 feet and the allowable number of residential units would be one for every 400 feet of land. B2-3 also would permit residential uses on the ground floor of a business district.
Initial plans had called for a four-story building, with two units per floor, on the 3,000-square-foot site.
Vittorio said that it has been weeks since the alderman’s office has heard from the developer of the Edison Park proposal, which would include a 156-sapce parking garage. Currently a hand car wash operates on the site, which is near the Edison Park Metra Station.
Hundreds of residents showed up at the committee’s June 1 meeting to hear the proposal, but the item was removed from the agenda because Troy Realty wanted to make changes.
The committee’s meetings are usually held the first Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at the Olympia Park fieldhouse, 6566 N. Avondale Ave. Vittorio said it is not known if there will be a Sept. 7 meeting.
The committee’s votes serves as a recommendation to Napolitano.