Friday, September 30, 2016

Ravenswood, Uptown historic American Indian Center up for re-development to apartments

1630 West Wilson Ave, Chicago IL 60640   All photos Eric Rojas, Broker, Kale Realty
Redevelopment plans are posted on the 47th Ward Alderman web site for the American Indian Center at 1630 West Wilson.  I know many readers here are aware the AIC is moving from a DNAinfo story last year.  Sources show the property is now under contract and a zoning change request has been submitted to the 47th Ward zoning review committee as follows:  

1630 W Wilson, RS3 to RM6 for adaptive reuse for 32 rental residential units & 16 parking spaces (former American Indian Center & National Historic Masonic Temple). 

Check out the plans HERE 
The plans will be put to community input after the Zoning Committee and Alderman review.  A LoopNet listing for the property does not contain asking price information.  The lot is approximately 92'x165' (15,000 sq/ft).  I have my educated guess on price range (under lock and key).

The south exposure facing West Wilson Ave.
The familiar staircase facing North Paulina Street (west exposure).

The leafy area is also know as the East Ravenswood Historic District added in 1991.
There is a mix of distinctive vintage walk-up buildings, large courtyard apartment buildings, churches and original singe family homes.
A group of attractive vintage homes sit across from the American Indian Center.  The blocks just north and south are a mix of mostly vintage buildings with some 1960s mistakes and a handful of new construction single family homes dotting the streets.

Typical condo conversions, co-ops and courtyard apartment buildings in the immediate area.

The loss of the community center is certainly a distinct change to the diversity and culture of the neighborhood. This is something to lament.  The American Indian Center reportedly has had a tough run of late and simply cannot maintain the physically crumbling building.  There is no mention that I can see on the AIC Facebook page of the eminent closing date or where the center will move to as of yet.

Exclusive of losing the center I think adding density is a good thing for the vibrancy of the neighborhood.  The location is fairly close to the CTA Brown Line, Ravenswood Metra and many restaurants, bars and everyday services.  The preservation of the building will at least maintain the district's architectural significance. 

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