Oak Park residents hoping to have a say on a proposed Madison Street apartment building, which has been the source of some neighborhood angst, will have their first crack next week.
A Chicago-based developer is planning to reinvent the long-vacant Comcast building at 820 W. Madison St., turning it from cable television offices into 51 apartments for low-income singles. Interfaith Housing Development Corp. was expected to submit its final application to the village on Tuesday, and the village board will start discussing it on Nov. 22, according to Village Planner Craig Failor.
Interfaith is partnering with Catholic Charities and the Oak Park Housing Authority to make the project happen. The final building being proposed is the same as what's been discussed over the past few years, said Ed Solan, executive director of the housing authority — four stories, first-floor retail and 51 apartments targeted at low-income individuals who live or work in Oak Park.
Some neighbors have voiced concerns about the project, saying that it's too dense and should contain a mix of residents with different incomes.
Interfaith will need relief from local zoning codes in order to remodel the Comcast building, which was formerly a Cadillac dealership. The current proposal is too tall, has too many apartments and doesn't provide enough parking spaces under village code.
The village board will hear a brief presentation on the project next week and then refer it to the Oak Park Plan Commission, which will then make a recommendation to trustees on the zoning variances. Failor expects the commission to start discussing the application on Dec. 16, and it will likely take about six meetings to make a recommendation to the village board.
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