LOGAN SQUARE — A Logan Square neighborhood group is attempting to rally car-loving locals by blaming parking problems on "hipsters" moving into the area.
A new flier from Save Our Boulevards, a group created in 2011 to support the preservation of Logan Square’s historic community, expresses concern about how a reported plan for 1,500 new apartment units on Milwaukee Avenue could reduce parking options in the neighborhood.
The group had particular words for Ald. Joe Moreno (1st) and the young, cocktail-sipping residents of Logan Square in fliers spotted around the neighborhood.
Jen Sabella discusses Ald. Joe Moreno's reaction:
"The media calls Alderman Moreno the 'Hipster Alderman,'" the post reads. "Tell him to stop representing the hipsters who don’t live here, but want to move [here], drink fancy cocktails for a few years, and then move to the suburbs because it’s too congested and their friends can't find a place to park.”
“Tell him start [sic] representing the people who live in the neighborhood now,” it continued.
The issue, according to Save Our Boulevards, is that large developments planned for Milwaukee Avenue are too dense and do not include enough parking. The neighborhood’s largest planned development — two 11- and 15-story buildings proposed for a set of vacant lots — would bring around 250 market-rate rental units just southeast of California and Milwaukee avenues. That would mean a total of around 500 units within 1,200 feet of the California Blue Line station, according to the Greater Goethe Neighborhood Association.
Many of these projects are advertised as Transit-Oriented Developments in building proposals under the Transit-Oriented Development ordinance, which was sponsored by Moreno to establish relatively car-free, walkable development near train stations.
But “parking space is important to most of us," according to Save Our Boulevards. "Most of us don’t ride our bikes to work. Most of us think density and congestion adversely affect our quality of life.”
Save Our Boulevards did not immediately return a call for comment on the fliers.
Moreno dismissed the "hipster" criticism, and in the past has said he's “uncomfortable” with that label. He grew up in affordable housing, he said, his father was a Mexican immigrant and his mother grew up a farm in Illinois.
"The diversity of our ward is its strength," he said Monday in response to the fliers.
"Unfortunately, there are a few that try to divide our neighborhoods by ethnicity, income, etc. I don't subscribe to those tactics."
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