DUNNING — A measure designed to prevent Harlem Avenue from being turned into a "canyon" by high-rise apartment buildings is expected to be approved Wednesday by the Chicago City Council.
The measure, introduced by Ald. Tim Cullerton (38th), was prompted by a proposal for a four-story apartment building near Harlem and Waveland avenues, which was criticized by neighbors as too big for the area and too close to nearby homes.
"This puts the kibosh on that development," Cullerton said Monday.
Heather Cherone says four-story buildings are rare in the neighborhood:
The ordinance, which was approved last week by the zoning committee, would establish stricter standards for building height, density and use along Harlem Avenue between Roscoe and Waveland avenues, Cullerton said.
Several three-story apartment buildings along Harlem built by Zitella Development Corp. have created a "canyon-like" effect, Cullerton said.
"Those buildings don't fit in well," Cullerton said. "They are pretty faceless with garage doors right on the street-level."
If Zitella or another developer wants to build a bigger, denser or taller development than allowed by the revised zoning ordinance, they are free apply for a variance — but they will have to go through a process that will allow nearby residents to weigh in on their plans, Cullerton said.
"The vast majority of people I talked to didn't want another building like the ones that are already there," Cullerton said.
Attorney Mark Kupiec, who represents Zitella, did not respond Monday to questions about the measure. In June, the firm dropped plans for a 30-apartment building at 3636 N. Harlem Ave. because of complaints from neighbors.
Although most of Dunning is now in the 36th Ward — represented by Ald. Nicholas Sposato — it will be in the 38th Ward when the new ward map takes effect after the 2015 aldermanic elections.
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