Diversity and development should not compete

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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As a longtime resident of Oak Park and editor of Wednesday Journal, you have witnessed all the changes in Oak Park. I have lived in Oak Park for 28 years, owning a house directly behind the vacant parking lot at 801 S. Oak Park Ave. I am sure you have heard of the proposal by the Community Builders and Community Bank to build a 37-unit apartment building on that lot, which had been previously used by Divine Consign.

Those of us on South Grove and Van Buren recently met and voiced our concerns regarding this development proposal at a July 12 public meeting. Our concerns are not about development in general or low-income housing, but the impact such a large apartment complex will have on the quality of life for those of us in the immediate residential neighborhood.

As the attached summary indicates (and voiced at the meeting) we believe the current project should be withdrawn and replaced with a project that would create less density, have less impact, and be more in keeping with the residential quality of our area. 

Other people attending the meeting, but living somewhat further away, believed that achieving diversity in Oak Park was the most important goal. Development and diversity are not competing issues; rather, the goal should be to have intelligent, balanced development in Oak Park.

Milton Clark

Oak Park

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