Sunday, April 13, 2008
Thanks to Craig Gernhart over at The Broken Heart for bringing up this important issue on his blog a couple of weeks back. Say what you will about Gernhart, but he tends to be the first blogger to showcase important issues and alert the rest of us to the destructive and otherwise pernicious actions of our AlderBeast and other city pols, that we otherwise might have remained unaware of.
As we now all know, Moore has decided to zone the 7400 N block of Western Ave. as C1- commercial, one of the most permissive zoning categories, which allows "tattoo parlors, carwashes, auto garages, taverns, liquor stores, and the storage of construction materials."
In the pictures above, are some of the things at stake. West Rogers Park is one of the city's most beautiful neighborhoods, and is a treasure-trove of wonderful domestic architecture, as pictured above. This area is stuffed with single-family homes and multifamily buildings of absolutely incredible quality, mostly built in the 1920s, and absolutely irreplaceable. In the photos here, you can see a small sampling of what we stand to lose by the destruction of this fine neighborhood, which still has extremely low crime and a high degree of neighborhood cohesion, but which has suffered in recent years as the blight of east Rogers Park has pushed westward. As it is, crime has crept upwards, and a number of fine old buildings have become blighted and dangerous, thanks in no small part to our AlderCreature's permissive attitude toward slumlords who happen to be his contributors.
I've never been one for conspiracy theories, but I can't help but sense that the entire north end of the city has been targeted as a dumping ground for the city's most intractable denizens, so that the inner-city areas can be redeveloped as upper-bracket enclaves.An old friend of mine long ago told me many times that this is exactly the case. Once again, pay-to-play politics are allowed to trump market forces as Da Mare and his servile, lay-down aldercreatures hatch plans that will inexorably push the most troublesome elements of the population onto the moderate-income neighborhoods of the far north side, the better to sanitize the downtown area and nearby neighborhoods.