The Jefferson Park Free Press

May 31, 2006

Volume III            News and Commentary              Issue V

by Robert Bank

 

Look for news and commentary in our June 6th issue, meanwhile...

 

 

VIEW CAMPAIGN DISCLOSURES AT:

http://www.elections.state.il.us/CampaignDisclosure/welcome.aspx

(click on “committees” and type in candidate’s last name)

 

 

VIEW THE NEW ZONING ORDINANCE GO TO: http://www.cityofchicago.org/zoning

 

 

 

VIEW WHEN THE ZONING COMMITTEE WILL MEET: http://www.chicityclerk.com/citycouncil/calendar.html

 

 

 

 

 

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http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/january06index.html

http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/november05index.html

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http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/june05index.html

http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/may05index.html

http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/april05index.html

http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/march05index.html

http://www.jeffersonparkfreepress.com/february05index.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Cheat Sheet

 

It’s All About The Dash (-)                                   (edited from our February’05 issue)

As the number following the dash goes up so does the density. For example a “- 1” requires a minimum of 2,500 square ft. of lot area for every unit, a “-1.5” allows 1,350 square feet of lot area per unit,  “- 2” allows only 1000 sq. ft. of lot area per unit and a  “-3” allows for even greater density requiring only 400 square feet per unit. So for example if you had 29,800 sq. ft. of land and you were zoned B2-3 you could build 74 condos! If the property was zoned B2-2 you would be allowed 29 condos, B2-1.5 would allow for 22 condos and if zoned B2-1, you could only build 11 condos.

That number after the dash makes a big difference. Now imagine that you bought a property zoned B3-1 but you were able to get it rezoned to B2-3, that “dash three” could make your property worth a lot, lot more. Why should the Alderman and the City give away that zoning? What is the community getting in return for this extreme density? What about the impact on the schools, traffic congestion, flooding and quality of life in general? Why would Alderman Levar want to diminish the quality of life just to increase a developer’s profits? If a developer bought the property as zoned let him build as zoned. Once the zoning change is allowed, a precedent will have been set and the City will have a very difficult time refusing, if it can refuse at all, future requests for up-zoning on the remaining parcels of that block.

 

Example:         Zoning classification for B2-__                          Example: 29,800 sq. ft lot

 

Dash  1     :    2,500 sq. ft. minimum lot area   per unit               allows approx. 11 condos

Dash  1.5  :    1,350 sq. ft. minimum lot area   per unit               allows approx. 22 condos

Dash  2     :    1,000 sq. ft. minimum lot area   per unit               allows approx. 29 condos

Dash  3     :       400 sq. ft. minimum lot area   per unit               allows approx. 74 condos 

 

 

 

The same applies for residential zoning. The density issue especially comes into play with older homes on double lots (50 x 125), which have 6,250 square feet or more. This type property has become attractive to developers because they can be torn down and replaced with two homes. The increased density affects not just the character of the neighborhood but also parking, school overcrowding and flooding (as green space that acted as a watershed is reduced).

Leaving a home on a double lot under R3 zoning or greater is like leaving a freshly baked pie on the window sill with the aroma wafting under the noses of developers. Down-zoning to “current use” such as R2 would stop the destruction of homes existing on double-lots. Note the chart below.

 

RS 1     :         6,250 sq. ft. minimum lot area required per unit      allows  1   unit  on a double lot

RS 2     :         5,000 sq. ft. minimum lot area required per unit      allows  1   unit  on a double lot

RS 3     :         2,500 sq. ft. minimum lot area required per unit    *allows 2.5 units on a double lot

RT 3.5  :         1,250 sq. ft. minimum lot area required per unit    *allows  5   units on a double lot

RT 4     :         1,000 sq. ft. minimum lot area required per unit    *allows  6   units on a double lot

           * a variance, or a slightly larger lot may allow for an extra unit.

 

 

 

 

 

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