A plan from developer Lincoln Property Company to buy an Uptown parking lot from Weiss Hospital and redevelop the site into a 12-story apartment complex with 314 rental units is back on the table after the 46th Ward Zoning & Development Committee changed its vote to support the project by a narrow margin.
The committee had initially met on Thursday, June 10 and 16 members voted against the plan, 15 voted in favor, and one person abstained. Block Club Chicago reported that Ald. James Cappleman would not support the project after the advisory group gave the zoning change a thumbs down.
However, at a June 17 committee meeting regarding a different apartment development, the Northalsted Business Alliance chamber of commerce revealed that one of its staffers "went rogue" at the previous event and had voted no against the group's wishes. With their vote changed to yes, the results tipped in the development's favor.
The revised vote, however, does not mean the project slated for the corner of Wilson Avenue and Marine Drive is a done deal. Although the alderman takes the committee's votes under consideration, he has yet to make a final decision about the requested zoning change.
"The takeaway is that the community is divided," Ald. Cappleman's chief of staff Tressa Feher told Urbanize. "[The alderman] is taking more time to talk to people in the community, beyond the zoning committee, before making his decision. It's definitely not a fait accompli because it's so close."
Lincoln Property Company is still under contract to purchase the lakefront site from Weiss Hospital. The proposed Valerio Dewalt Train-designed building features a courtyard layout and includes parking for 136 cars and a rooftop deck. The plan has eight affordable units on-site and will make a $3.1 million contribution to nonprofit Sarah's Circle to build a new housing facility.