A revitalization plan for North Ave. (Austin to Harlem) is now underway. http://www.oakpark.com/News/Articles/7-24-2018/A-redevelopment-plan-for-North-Ave.-in-the-works-/ The more we hear from those who live near/utilize North Ave. (Austin to Harlem), the better the plan will be. So please share your views in this online survey: https://northavenue.metroquest.com/
If you own/manage/work at a North Ave. organization, there’s a special survey for you. Someone will stop by and ask you to complete it on Friday, August 17th between 10 am and 2 pm. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to take the survey at another time.
BUSINESS, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND REAL ESTATE
- Seritage, owner of the former North/Harlem Sears site, will receive a $2 billion loan from Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway. http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-seritage-berkshire-hathaway-20180801-story.html Glad they’re going to be so well-capitalized.
- Lexington Betty Smoke House #1 is opening soon in the former Mulan’s Kitchen space, 6954 W. North in Chicago. They already have a catering business and a food truck. Welcome to The North Avenue District!
- After extensive interior work, Living Word Christian Center re-opened its employment training center at 6266 W. North Ave. in Chicago. The space is now bright and comfortable. LWCC likes the location because it’s easy to find and reach via public transportation.
- Trustee Deno Andrews says the probable future owner of the vacant grocery at North/Harlem in Oak Park really hopes to attract those who live nearby. Welcome news!
- Surf’s Up (6427 W. North in Oak Park) has 4½ stars on Yelp. https://www.yelp.com/biz/surfs-up-restaurants-oak-park?hrid=Jjr5b_KSY6R53bLyA20t1w&osq=Restaurants If you haven’t tried it yet, please do. Everything is very fresh, delicious and reasonably priced.
- It appears that the psychic reading business has closed at 6739 W North in Oak Park. Did you foresee this?
- As of July 30th, 14 District properties were advertised for sale, up from nine in April. Office and retail space at 17 properties was advertised for lease.
- A regulated business license was issued to Terms and Limits LLC, 1648 N. Moody https://chicago.everyblock.com/business-licenses/jun27-terms-and-limits-llc-8751378/?utm_campaign=digest&utm_medium=email&utm_source=digest
- Businesses like Spin City, 6522 W. North Ave. in Chicago, are exploiting a loophole to operate video gambling in the city. Chris Taliaferro – 29th Ward Alderman has repeatedly asked the city to do something about Spin City. But they remain open, despite falsifying their business license application. A bill outlawing these machines statewide failed narrowly. More than 30 alderman are backing a measure to ban them in Chicago, which Mayor Emanuel is reviewing. https://www.wbez.org/shows/wbez-news/slot-style-games-make-a-mockery-of-illinois-video-poker-law/69d1c814-9038-461a-baac-e376fd619df5
- The Oak Park Board rolled back several massage parlor ordinance provisions. (The ordinance was first enacted after three parlors—two on North Ave.—were closed for running prostitution rings.) One closed-down North Ave. massage parlor re-opened almost immediately “under new ownership”. Also of concern, the Board has lifted all restrictions on operating hours. In this letter, a licensed massage therapist says such restrictions make sense.http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/oak-park/news/ct-oak-letter-keyhan-tl-0726-story.html
- At a 7/9 hearing on the proposed North Ave. TIF, River Forest residents expressed concern about loss of affordable housing and possible taking of their own homes via eminent domain. http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/river-forest/news/ct-rfl-north-avenue-tif-tl-0719-story.html The TIF will enable River Forest to capitalize on momentum from redevelopment of the former Sears property at North/Harlem. Elmwood Park already has a TIF. Hopefully, Chicago and Oak Park will be ready to move the development momentum east.
- The 1200 block of N. East Ave. in Oak Park now has a speed table to help slow southbound traffic from North Ave. As traffic volume has grown, frustrated eastbound drivers have increasingly turned south, often driving much too fast. Hopefully, speed tables will make side streets safer. Woodbine already has one.
- A federal judge has dismissed the lawsuit of Keystone Montessori School—7415 W. North Ave.—against the Village of River Forest. The case will be transferred to Cook County Circuit Court. http://www.oakpark.com/News/Articles/7-18-2018/Judge-dismisses-school’s-lawsuit-against-River-Forest/
THE NORTH AVENUE DISTRICT (T-NAD) is working for revitalization of North Avenue from Austin to Harlem. Please join our Facebook group and the conversation. https://www.facebook.com/groups/107435609823334/
- Help guide the future of North Avenue (Austin to Harlem) by sharing your views in this survey: https://northavenue.metroquest.com. This will help create a plan that builds on assets, addresses your issues and strengthens the District. With the sponsorship and support of Ald. Taliaferro/the 29th Ward, Mayor Abu-Taleb/Village of Oak Park, The North Avenue District is partnering with the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) to develop the plan. Here’s a story on the survey: http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/oak-park/news/ct-oak-north-avenue-survey-tl-0726-story.html#
- You also can help by passing out and gathering 2-page paper surveys on your block.If you’re willing to help or have questions, please contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- There’s now a beautiful mural on the entire west wall of Wonder Works, A Children’s Museum in Oak Park, 6445 W. North Ave. https://www.nbcchicago.com/on-air/as-seen-on/young-adults-bring-marine-mosaics-to-life-in-oak-park-488336791.html; http://abc7chicago.com/community-events/young-artists-install-mosaic-mural-in-oak-park-as-part-of-summer-program/3849653/ Ribbon-cutting is Sunday, 8/12, 12:30 pm. The North Avenue District hopes this is just the first of many North Ave. murals/arts projects. A big thank you to the Oak Park Area Arts Council for making this possible, and to Trustee Deno Andrews for his support.
- Please attend a community yard sale and block party to benefit Sayre Language Academy, 1850 N. Newland, on Saturday, 8/25, 10 am to 1 pm. There will be food, music, games and crafts for kids. https://www.dropbox.com/s/zt3fzw977ta1f6b/Swap-O-Rama-Flyer.pdf?dl=0
CRIME AND SAFETY
- Please join Commander Escamilla and his team at the 25th District’s National Night Out tonight, 8/7, 5-8 pm in the front parking lot of District HQ, 5555 W. Grand. This program promotes police-community partnerships for safer neighborhoods. https://gallery.mailchimp.com/0c1018748d53b6a11536e8215/images/d9d94e8d-7190-4683-91f7-dfb1ea4adb93.jpg
- In the 25th District, YTD crime through 8/5 declined almost 24%. Shootings were down by one-third.
OAK PARK (Zone 1 is bounded by North Ave., Ridgeland, Chicago Ave. and Austin Blvd. Zone 2 is bounded by North Ave., Harlem, Chicago Ave., and Ridgeland)
- In both Zone 1 and Zone 2, June crime was up month-to-month, but down relative to June 2017 and YTD. Zone 1 YTD incidents fell a particularly substantial 44%.
Thanks for your interest, and enjoy the rest of your summer!