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Lathrop Homes Redevelopment To Break Ground Next Week

By Mina Bloom | October 3, 2017 5:26am
 A rendering of the redevelopment project
A rendering of the redevelopment project
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Related Midwest

LOGAN SQUARE — City officials and developers will mark the beginning of the massive Lathrop Homes redevelopment project with a groundbreaking ceremony next week.

According to Molly Sullivan, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Housing Authority, the ceremony was originally scheduled for Friday, but had to be pushed back due to a scheduling issue. Sullivan said an exact date and time will be released in the coming days.

Representatives from the CHA, as well as Related Midwest, Bickerdike Revdelopment and the Chicago Department of Planning and Development are all expected to attend.

When the Lathrop Homes were built in 1938, they offered more than 900 public housing units spread across 32 acres of land bordered by the Chicago River, Diversey Parkway, Clybourn and Damen avenues, making it the largest public housing complex on the North Side.

Today, very few of the units are occupied. The largely empty complex — sandwiched between affluent neighborhoods including Lincoln Park and Bucktown — is a ghost of what it once was.

After more than 15 years of anticipation and debate, the final redevelopment plan surfaced last summer. The plan calls for a mixed-use campus with more than 1,200 residential units built over three phases, retail storefronts, a revamped riverwalk and new landscaping.

A few months later, the CHA and a group of attorneys behind a decades-long fight to desegregate public housing reached an agreement on replacement public housing.

Under the legal agreement, 525 replacement public housing units will be built on the Northwest Side, including 420 family units and 105 senior housing units, plus an additional 105 public housing units, bringing the total to 630.

The Lathrop Homes redevelopment plan is part of the city's Plan for Transformation, an initiative designed by then-Mayor Richard M. Daley to replace all of the city's public housing with mixed-income housing.