February 7, 2017 ELVN Meeting Minutes
The meeting was called to order at 7:01 p.m.
Jim opened the meeting thanking everyone who participated in the December meeting, especially Beth who hosted the meeting and Heather and the Cubs for bringing the World Series trophy.
Alderman Cappleman was present to give the report.
The former Mobil gas station will be closing on its sale this month. Thereafter the gas tanks will be removed and demolition will begin.
The Gasman project is on schedule.
He received a proposal for a wine and spirits (packaged goods) store at 3651 N. Halsted across from the Center on Halsted. Nick Patel, who is developing the former Sutcliffe Pharmacy on Irving Park into a store with significant space for liquor sales, is the developer who proposed it. The space is the former brown elephant store. The space is already properly zoned for such a store. However, Ald. Cappleman and Ald. Tunney have expressed serious reservations due to its proposed location across from the Center on Halsted. Local police appear to oppose the plan as well. Ald. Cappleman says that if the police voice their official opposition to the proposal, then he will do everything in his power to oppose it.
Mark echoes the Alderman’s concern and also states that there is a saturation of alcohol stores in the area with Whole Foods, 7-11, and Walgreens. Maggie says that the alcohol selection is not very extensive in those places. Ald. Cappleman says that Nick Patel will reach out to the police who will hear his business plan and decide whether they will support or oppose the plan.
The 3700-3800 N. Broadway water main project continues. The west side of the street will be completed first, and then the east side will be done. All will be repaved on Broadway from Irving Park to Belmont. There will be new acorn lighting on the 3700-3800 block of Broadway that will hopefully be done by the Pride Parade.
The annual $1.32 million dollars for each ward to spend on selected projects is again available. As always, we will vote for the projects to be conducted with these improvement menu funds. The deadline for selection is the end of February. The ward will give $10,000 for art to be displayed and the City will match it for a total of $20,000 toward an art project to be done by the fall.
Chester asked about a Gill Park update. Ald. Cappleman was told in the fall that playground equipment was to be taken out and replaced, but has heard nothing since then.
Terie asked the Alderman about matching funds for art if ELVN donates toward art in the East Lakeview community, to which he responded in the affirmative. There are 3 East Lakeview sites being considered, specifically Clarendon and Broadway, redoing the Gill Park mural, and the Sheridan el stop.
Jim asks if Joe Lomanto’s Ace Hardware proposal passed the zoning committee. The Alderman confirmed that it had and that it is now going before the Department of Planning.
Terie asks about the former Tropico site under the el tracks. The Alderman stated that there will be a wrought iron fence around the property for a year, and then a one story building will be constructed with a possible breakfast restaurant.
Ald. Tunney’s staffer Chris was present to give the report.
Clark and Addison construction continues.
The commander said late last week that East Lakeview lost 12 officers from January to early February. However, the commander says that now we have gained 14 officers, so there is a net increase of 2 officers.
The 50/50 art project discussed earlier comes from the Mayor making 2017 the Year of Art in Chicago. Ward 44 also has designated $10,000 toward the projects. Terie asks about the annual sculpture selection event that Jim attended. Jim says that there were 82 works, which will be narrowed to 50, and then people will reconvene to choose the piece for display.
Chester asks about Chicago View no longer being the sole service provider for SSA-17 (which is Clark from Belmont to Diversey). Ald. Tunney chose the Lakeview East Chamber as the new service provider and Maggie was instrumental in that selection. The goal is to start extra security through the Chamber on March 1. Belmont and Sheffield will have a security office and other Chamber services there as well. The Cubs announced extra security as well, which Heather will discuss shortly.
The Plaza needs a plan of operation, and Ald. Tunney is working with the Cubs on it. Terie asks who in the community is involved, as any time there is a plan of operation the community is asked for input. Chris was not sure.
Heather was present to give the report.
The Cubs have initiated a new security program called Safe at Home. It consists of 2 off-duty police officers in an unmarked car driving between the boundaries of Roscoe, Irving Park, Wilton, and Racine. These drive-arounds will take place from 10:00 p.m.-6:00 a.m. all year every weekend. During warmer weather, the drives will occur every single day. The officers have regular check-in calls. Side streets and alleys will be the focus and they are primarily a deterrent against crime. The drives have already begun. These 2 officers do security during games as well, and they will make sure that Kelly Park is covered. If anyone has suggested hot spots, please let Heather know so that she can inform them. They are logging approximately 50 miles per night.
An attendee from the community asked about the concerts, notably about the 3 consecutive nights of concerts in one stretch this summer. Heather and others confirmed that a 3-night stretch has occurred in previous summers.
Another attendee asked about traffic management. Heather confirmed that the drive-around officers are direct contractors for Cubs, unlike the traffic workers during games who work for the City and over whom the Cubs have no disciplinary control.
The Cubs are providing a school all-star grant of up to $25,000 in all Lakeview schools, including the high schools and including private and public schools.
The Race to Wrigley will be April 29 with the same route as last year.
The Plaza will be open on Opening Day.
Terie asks if the money donated by ELVN to local schools can be matched by the Cubs. Heather says it cannot because the Cubs are already giving substantial grants to these schools.
ELVN meeting dates in 2017 will still be the first Tuesday of each month, with no meeting in July.
2017 ELVN Board elections are coming. We will probably hold the election in May.
In March ELVN may be having its meeting in a different location.
Board members whose terms are expiring include Michael Zink, Bruce Handler, Mark Lundgren, Beth Murphy, Jean O’Neill, Aileen Tien, Patrick Carlson, and Marty Wallace.
Chester says that he routinely attends CAPS meetings and is now finally getting clear responses to questions of security.
Charlie San Fratello was the ad hoc President of Kelly Park, and Brandon Cunningham is the new president. Please e-mail Brandon at email@example.com if you are interested in getting involved or if you have suggestions of improvements. Charlie says that there will be Kelly Park meetings the second Thursday of each month at Gill Park. Charlie’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Trees were cut in Kelly Park because they were all green ash trees and there was concern of the ash borer. Trees will be replanted in the spring.
The meeting adjourned at 7:43 p.m.
There will be a 3-person nominating committee for the ELVN Board election to vet nominees, get biographies, and post them online. The names will be put on the ballots in random order, and the committee will run the election, track ballots, and report results by the end of the meeting. The committee can accept nominations on the night of the election. All nominees must be a paid member. Tom, Terie and Maggie will be on the committee.
Maggie says that the Lakeview East Chamber will host the ELVN March 7 meeting at the Chamber’s own meeting. The location is not known yet.
The Annual Wrigley Field meeting will be in the 19th District meeting room in March, but the date has not been determined.
Oktoberfest will be September 24, 2017. After discussion, it does not conflict with Rosh Hashanah, which ends a few days before then.
ELVN has already paid for Police Appreciation Day, will pay for a 501(c)(3), and maybe will pay for new benches in Kelly Park.
The meeting adjourned at 7:54 p.m.