JEFFERSON PARK — The Jefferson Park Neighborhood Association Wednesday elected a new president who opposes efforts to revitalize the neighborhood's business district by allowing dense residential developments near the transit center.
Both Bank and Richter said the election was a proxy war between supporters and opponents of Ald. John Arena (45th), who favors dense residential housing developments near transit hubs and business districts to create economic vitality.
On Facebook, Richter congratulated Bank and the other newly elected board members and said he would remain active in the group he joined in January. Richter also offered to help remake the association's website, jpna.net, which he said needs to be updated.
"I plan on sticking around the neighborhood for the long haul and being a pain in the a-- for the things I care about," Richter wrote.
Bank did not return Facebook or phone messages Thursday, and his only response to well wishes was to like a posting of "Hail to the Chief" that tagged him on Facebook.
Bank has been a vociferous critic of Arena and two projects proposed by Mega Realty in the Jefferson Park Business District, including a 12-story tower that Wednesday night drew a mixed reaction at a community meeting.
Before the election, Bank said if he won he would work to "keep the character of the neighborhood" as it is with mostly single-family homes and two-flat apartment buildings while supporting good development.
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