The Mandel Group held an informational meeting last month at Lakefront Palmgarden on the RiverCrest Condo development to go in on the land south of North near Jewel Osco (see RNA news, page 6). These condos are located in an area the City refers to as “Beerline C.” The next step in the plan is to get approval of the Zoning, Neighborhoods, and Development Committee on Sept. 16. If approved, plans could go to the full Common Council on September 23. A link to the planned bike trail was added in response to comments at the meeting.

East Side neighbors have expressed concern over a development called Lafayette Place, a 32-story, 139-unit high-rise planned for the corner of Lafayette Place and Prospect Avenue. Some near neighbors complain that the high-rise is completely inappropriate for its location. Over the past two years plans have been finalized, “going through the ringer” of neighborhood input and $2 million in revisions in the summer of 2001. According to Arnis Putrenicks of Lafayette Partners, a subsidiary of Illinois-based Trinity Group developers, Third District Ald. Mike D’Amato was “supportive and invested in bringing us and the neighbors together to find a solution that worked for everyone.” However D’Amato said in a recent conversation that he now is unsure whether the development group will break ground as it does not seem to be generating significant pre-building sales. A decision to build a ramp down to the Oak Leaf Trail along the lakefront was approved by the city at the end of 2002, and the plans have remained unchanged since. The last hurdle the project must clear before beginning construction is securing financing for the development. Most units in the structure will range from $240-$675 thousand, with one parking space allotted to each unit and the option to secure one additional space.

The city recently requested proposals for the Post-Teledyne Building on Humboldt & Locust (north of The Tracks). Several parties have expressed interest; the RFP was scheduled to close at the end of August.

On August 18, Boris Gokhman of New Land Enterprises presented plans for an 11-story, 112-unit condominium development to East Side residents. Nearby residents, including those who park in the lot on the northwest corner of Royal and Farwell Avenues, the proposed site for the project, were invited by Ald. D’Amato to attend this informational meeting and discuss their concerns. Per city regulations, the 70 spaces in the lot will be replaced with 213 indoor, heated parking spaces for residents of the condominiums and neighboring buildings. Those who currently have spaces in the lot will be given priority over other neighbors wishing to rent a space in the garage. “I did explain to them that it will be a temporary inconvenience,” says Gokhman of the building’s construction. “We will accommodate as many people as we can [by assigning spaces in other lots in the area] to eliminate this inconvenience.” Units in the building will range in price from $170,000-$200,000 for one-bedroom and $250,000-$300,000 for two-bedroom corner units. Only the residences on the top floors of the building will be in the $300,000 range, says Gokhman. Construction will begin after the project receives final approval and financing. Riverwest Currents – Volume 2 – Issue 9 – September 2003