Albion 'issues' involve more than Austin Gardens

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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After poring over a 500+ page plan development application by Albion Residential for an 18-story apartment building at the corner of Lake and Forest, the Oak Park Plan Commission is holding review meetings at Oak Park Village Hall. 

The first was on Tuesday, July 11, but the next one is this Thursday, July 13, with two others to follow on July 27 and Aug. 3, if necessary. 

Under consideration is Albion's request to relax zoning rules for height (from 8 to 18 stories), density, setbacks, landscaping and parking. Although the effect of this request on Austin Gardens has been much in the news, there are many other concerns that need to be addressed. Chief among them are traffic, wind-tunnel effect, density, architecture befitting Oak Park, strain on public services and a building of this scope and height in direct conflict with the 2014 Comprehensive Plan for Downtown Oak Park, signed off on by President Anan Abu-Taleb and trustees Bob Tucker and Andrea Button Ott. 

Feeling certain that the commission wants feedback from fellow citizens, I urge Oak Parkers to attend the 7 p.m. meetings or to send their thoughts on this issue via email to or through regular mail to the attention of Village Planner Craig Failor, liaison to the volunteer commission, 123 Madison St., Oak Park IL 60302. He can also be reached at 708-358-5418.

Lorraine Owles

Oak Park resident since 1967
(who does not live near Austin Gardens)

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