The Demolition Delay Ordinance, adopted by City Council in 2003, establishes a hold of up to 90 days in the issuance of any demolition permit for certain historic buildings in order that the Department of Planning and Development can explore options, as appropriate, to preserve the building, including but not limited to Landmark designation.
The ordinance applies to buildings rated red and orange in the Chicago Historic Resources Survey (CHRS), but it should be modified to include all buildings included in the survey. These buildings are designated on the city’s zoning map. The delay period starts at the time the permit application is presented to the department’s Historic Preservation Division offices and can be extended beyond the original 90 days by mutual agreement with the applicant. The purpose of the ordinance is to ensure that no important historic resource can be demolished without consideration as to whether it should and can be preserved.
Preservation Chicago is advocating to extend the existing Demolition Delay Ordinance to at least 180 days or longer, in order to create the time community members, stakeholders, decision makers, and elected officials need to conduct robust discussions regarding the fate of these historic buildings and irreplaceable Chicago assets. The support of the Mayor and City Council is necessary to advance this effort.
Address: Second Church of Christ Scientist 2700 N. Pine Grove Avenue, Lincoln Park
(A Chicago 7 Most Endangered 2019)
Date Received: 01/07/2021
Ward: 43rd Ward Alderman Michele Smith
Applicant: Second Church of Christ Scientist c/o Fenton Booth
Owner: Second Church of Christ Scientist
Permit Description: Alterations to the interior of the existing masonry church building, including seven-story and basement additions containing 26 residential units, and 30 basement-level parking spaces. Work includes the demolition of the interior structure, the roof and the north wall of the existing church, exterior east, west and south walls to remain on the building.
Preservation Chicago has been advocating to save the Second Church of Christ Scientist for many years and it was a Chicago 7 Most Endangered in 2019. Second Church of Christ was designed by Solon S. Beman in 1901. By any measure, it should be a Designated Chicago Landmark.
Preservation Chicago was able to secure the interest of a major philanthropic foundation with plans to restore the magnificent church building and convert it into a cultural arts center. The congregation would have continued to have access for religious services. The congregation flatly rejected the offer preferring to monetize the value of the land. The decision of the development team to save the exterior walls is an improvement over the initial plans, but the building, including its magnificent dome, should be preserved in its entirety.
Address: 1399 W. Lake Street, West Loop (Lake Street Schlitz Tied House / La Lucé)
Date Received: 12/02/2020
Ward: 27th Ward Alderman Walter Burnett
Applicant: Spirit Wrecking and Excavation, Inc.
Owner: Veritas Chicago, LLC C/O Anthony Giannini
Permit Description: Demolition of a 4-story, multi-family, mixed-use masonry building.
Preservation Chicago is committed to strengthening the vibrancy of Chicago’s economy and quality of life by championing our historic built environment. Preservation Chicago protects and revitalizes Chicago’s irreplaceable architecture, neighborhoods and urban green spaces. We influence stakeholders toward creative reuse and preservation through advocacy, outreach, education, and partnership.