|Fifth Third Bank property in Lincoln Square at the corner of Lawrence and Western. An ordinance has been introduced to "down-zone" the property.|
40th Ward Alderman Andre Vasquez quietly introduced an ordinance yesterday to down zone the Fifth Third Bank property (4800 North Western). My real estate data partner Chicago Cityscape tweeted the ordinance to me due to my posts/ tweet on the potential retail development. My past post HERE. This is effectively an effort to stop a planned "as of right' development. As of this writing there is no public statement concerning this unusual step on the 40th Ward website, Facebook site or personal accounts.The zoning reclassification ordinance can be read here
I'm not supportive of attempts of a single alderman to unilaterally "spot zone" properties to prevent as of right development. One similar attempt to down zone an individual property in Logan Square failed to stop a 60 unit development.
I have no direct financial stake in the re-development plans for the Fifth Third bank properties. This is not an endorsement of this particular development. I am opposed to introducing an ordinance, in this manner, to change zoning classification in an attempt to prevent as of right development by private property owners.
"Down-zoning" can be good policy if done as broader, more inclusive process like any legislation. Crain's Chicago Business has a good article explaining the practice of ad hoc down-zoning HERE