June 28, 2019

Heartland Cafe Redevelopment


Arbor Investment Management LLC has provided the 49th Ward office with updated site plans and elevations for the redevelopment of the former Heartland Cafe located at 7000 N. Glenwood. 

The developer is in the process of applying for permits through the Department of Buildings and the Department of Transportation. They are hoping to break ground on the new building by the end of February or early March. While construction is underway, Glenwood between Lunt and Greenleaf will be temporarily closed to traffic. Residents needing to access the alley will still be able to do so while construction is underway. The office will continue to provide the community updates on closure and approvals as they are finalized. 

The new plans call for a 5-story, mixed-use building. The ground floor will have 2,554-feet dedicated to retail space; the remaining ground-floor space will comprise of a lobby area and amenities for the residential tenants. 

The new plans include a total of 30 residential units on the second through the fourth floors. There will be nine 1 bedroom/1 bathroom units, two 2 bedroom/2 bathroom units, one 3 bedroom/2 bathroom unit, and one 3 bedroom/3 bathroom unit. The fifth floor will contain a 467-square foot party room with a 568-square foot exterior deck that overlooks Glenwood. The building will include a 15-space parking lot and storage for 30 bicycles. 

The new plans are permitted by-right and do not require a zoning change.

Decision on Zoning Change Request

Below is the text from the public statement we issued regarding my decision to not support the zoning change request of Sam Goldman for his development at 7000 N Glenwood, the former Heartland Cafe site. For those who have additional questions about the decision, I'll add a bit more detail here.

Property is zoned to promote and support specific development and control for density and neighborhood characteristics. The zoning currently set for the area around Glenwood and Lunt was made so some time ago by the Planning Department. In the past, it was common for Aldermen to "upzone" or "downzone" properties to suit their personal agendas, gain additional leverage for desired project changes, or in some cases even for political contributions or favors, this is not the way I will make decisions about zoning. We have a community-driven process that looks at community benefits and needs, best practices in planning and short and long term impacts on the neighborhood.

Also, my decision to not support the zoning change is not the final say in the process. A developer may continue to pursue the change and it must pass through the Zoning and Landmarks Committee. I do sit on that committee, but there are many reforms afoot ending the ability for one Alderwoman to have the final say on whether a zoning change is approved or not. For the record, we consulted with our Planning Department on this request and in their opinion, it was not a change they supported either.

Finally, the community input we received was robust and plentiful. This decision took into account not only what was lacking, but also what people liked about the project. In the end, the development that Sam is able to build by right will contain many of the features and meet some of the needs that people who supported the project liked while limiting the impacts on density, congestion that concerned people who didn't support the project. Again, thank everyone who participated and shared your ideas. We'll continue to make improvements to our process!