WICKER PARK — Two dozen townhomes are being proposed in Wicker Park for an oblong-shaped stretch of vacant land near The Bloomingdale Trail, sources say.
The 24 three-bedroom townhomes planned for 1701-99 N. Winnebago Ave. will be listed by realtor Landon Harper.
Renderings and the sale price of the townhouses were not immediately available. Harper said details will be available soon.
A source from MCZ Development Corp., the owner of the property, said construction on the project is scheduled to begin in October and that each home will have its own garage.
The future development's proximity to the Bloomingdale Trail could be a strong lure for potential home buyers. Scheduled to open next summer, the 2.7-mile elevated trail will span several neighborhoods, from the baby stroller-filled streets of Bucktown to Ridgeway Avenue in Humboldt Park, and will serve as the centerpiece of a larger system also known as "The 606."
Real estate experts have predicted the trail would spark development.
Early Wednesday, Vanna Cord, who lives across the street from the planned townhouse project, was exercising her dog, Penny, on the proposed site, which runs along the CTA Blue Line "L" tracks.
"We just call it the field," said Cord, adding that while she takes her dog there the fact the field is often strewn with garage makes it "unsafe."
Upon hearing of the townhome plan from a reporter, Cord said she would be "way down with that."
"I would much rather have units that are townhomes there than rental apartments," Cord said, referring to two previous plans by MCZ Development Corp., dating back to 2012, that included bringing up to 54 apartments to the area.
Cord, who has has lived across from the field for two years, said she was among the several dozen residents that protested the developer's previous plans, citing a litany of concerns related to increased density and traffic.
The developer's previous plan to build apartments did not receive a necessary zoning change from Ald. Joe Moreno (1st) due to the neighbor concerns. After an aldermanic re-mapping, the land is now in Ald. Scott Waguespack's 32nd Ward.
"Our goal on these things is to get as much community input as we can. We are not under any development pressure to get vacant lots developed. This project has been in the first ward for a long time," said Paul Sajovec, Waguespack's Chief of Staff.
Though Sajovec said he has not yet seen the townhome plans, he said he thought the site would be large enough to support 24 residential units.
Sajovec didn't foresee any zoning problems, given other residential developments on the western side of Winnebago and to the west and south of the land.
On Thursday, Waguespack said the developer got the go ahead from him months ago and is "going to build as of right" within the existing zoning.
Waguespack said he is "okay with the plans they had drafted."
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