If you care about being able to continue to live in River Forest or about maintaining what little diversity the village has, it’s critical that you attend and speak out this  Tuesday, Jan. 21, 7 p.m., at River Forest Village Hall (400 Park) during the Plan Commission’s public hearing on the painfully inadequate draft “Affordable Housing Plan.” 

The draft plan is no plan at all. Like the “Comprehensive Plan” that the previous village board adopted, it fails to commit the village to preserve existing housing that our neighbors with modest incomes can afford — seniors, teachers, librarians, bank managers and tellers, our recent college graduates, most households with an income under the village’s $107,000 median. And it includes nothing to facilitate the addition of new housing our neighbors of modest incomes can afford when their housing is taken for new developments in the North Avenue and Madison Avenue TIF districts where the village wants to replace existing housing with new building that is unaffordable to the current residents of these neighborhoods. 

With three in 10 River Forest households “cost burdened,” (spending 30 percent or more on housing) and one fourth of village tenants severely cost-burdened (spending over half their income on rent), we can ill afford to adopt an “Affordable Housing Plan” that is unresponsive to the needs of our River Forest neighbors. 

Get more details on the plan, including a copy highlighting what’s wrong with it and how to fix it, at http://www.riverforestmatters.com. And be sure to attend next Tuesday’s Plan Commission hearing — this plan is the only item on the agenda. 

The Plan Commission needs to hear from you.

Daniel Lauber

River Forest

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