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222 New Apartments, 184 Renovated Units Coming To Roosevelt Square As Years-Long Project Kicks Off Newest Phase

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LITTLE ITALY — Work is underway to build 222 new apartments and update 184 affordable apartments as part of the next phase of the Roosevelt Square development.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Ald. Jason Ervin (28th) and other local leaders joined a groundbreaking ceremonial for the project on Monday at the former ABLA (Addams, Brooks, Loomis, Abbott) homes.

Phase 3B of the project includes three new mid-rise buildings at 1002 S. Racine Ave., 1257 W. Roosevelt Road and 1357 W. Roosevelt Road. ranging from studios to three bedroom apartments. It also includes 15 apartments within the restored Jane Addams Homes, 1322 W. Taylor St., which will also house the National Public Housing Museum, which opens this fall.

The developers also plan to renovate two existing buildings with 184 apartments built during the first phase of the project nearly 15 years ago.

In total, there will be 80 Chicago Housing Authority apartments, 50 affordable workforce housing, and 92 market-priced apartments. Here is a breakdown by building:

Viale S. Racine 1002

  • 67 apartments
  • 17 CHA and 50 at market rate
  • Amenities include a fitness center, indoor entertainment space, deck, parking and storage. A grocery store and a pizzeria will open on the ground floor.

1257 W. Roosevelt Road

  • 70 apartments
  • 29 CHA, 20 convenient and 21 at market price

1357 W. Roosevelt Road

  • 70 apartments
  • 29 CHA, 20 convenient and 21 at market price

Both Roosevelt Road buildings will have a fitness center, outdoor utility space, a dog enclosure, parking and storage spaces, officials said.

National Museum of Social Housing

  • 15 apartments
  • Five CHA, five convenient and five at market price

The remodeled apartments will have new flooring, cabinets, countertops, appliances and energy-efficient systems, officials said.

This phase of the project could be completed by 2024.

The $172 million project, led by the Chicago Housing Authority and developer Related Midwest, is funded by a mix of public and private money, leaders said. The City Council approved the funding for the project in February 2022.

RELATED: The long-awaited next phase of Roosevelt Square’s development has met with a mixed response from Near West Side neighbors

Credit: Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
Guests walk past the National Public Housing Museum site during the groundbreaking ceremony for the latest Roosevelt Square development in Little Italy on January 20, 2023.

Lightfoot and other leaders have hailed the project, saying it will “transform” Taylor Street and deliver on its promise to bring residents back to the area. The integration of CHA and market-priced housing should be the “model” for what the city does in other areas, Lightfoot said.

“We cannot continue to build segregated, low-income housing, piling the poor on top of each other in isolated communities where they don’t have access to the kinds of services we know are critical to liveliness and safety,” he said. Club block.

Ervin said it was exciting to see progress on a land that “promised so much but delivered so little.”

“This day has been a long time coming,” she said. “Fortunately, we have been able to deliver many units here over the past five years and we want to continue this progress.”

A mixed-income residential building at 1336 W. Taylor St. opened in early 2019 with a new branch of the Little Italy Public Library on the first floor in an earlier phase of the project.

Tracey Scott, CEO of the housing authority, said the integration of public and market housing is key to making affordable housing sustainable.

“For strong neighborhoods, we need that mix,” Scott said. “We know that diversity makes us stronger as a community, as a city, whether by income, by race, by occupation.”

Credit: Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
Mayor Lori Lightfoot is staying with Ald. Jason Ervin (28th) during the groundbreaking ceremony for the latest Roosevelt Square development in Little Italy on January 20, 2023.
Credit: Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
Owen Pittman, CEO of MIKK-DLP Construction, speaks during the groundbreaking ceremony for the latest Roosevelt Square development in Little Italy on January 20, 2023.

The CHA is the city’s third-largest public housing agency, serving more than 20,000 low-income families, according to its website.

Public housing across the city has undergone many changes since 2000, when former Mayor Richard M. Daley launched the Transformation Plan to demolish thousands of public housing units and rebuild them. This has led to much changed communities, segregation and gentrification, according to a 2017 WBEZ analysis.

The transformation of the ABLA sites was recently the subject of controversy in the city after the city leased land for housing to the Chicago Fire football team, according to a ProPublica survey. The team will lease approximately 26 acres to construct a practice facility with six soccer fields and a training and commercial office building at Roosevelt Road and Ashland Avenue.

Similar controversy has surrounded plans for a new Near South Side high school. This is planned for part of the land set aside for the Southbridge redevelopment near 24th and State Streets, the former Harold Ickes Homes.

Lightfoot and Ervin backed the Roosevelt Square plan and reiterated their support on Monday, saying it would bring economic development to the area and increase funding for the CHA.

“I don’t think the two conflict,” Lightfoot said of the Roosevelt Square development and the Chicago Fire facilities. “It’s a thoughtful deal done with the community at the table and with the community interest in mind.”

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Written by Natalia Chi

Chicago Popular; Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.

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