THREATENED: Strong Community Opposition to Planned Demolition of Damen Silos (Chicago 7 2023)

Damen Silos, a 2023 Chicago 7 Most Endangered. 1906, John Metcalf (civil engineer), 2860 S. Damen Ave. Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Eric Allix Rogers
Statement from Alderwoman Julia Ramírez in support of preservation and reuse of the Damen Grain Silos in posted on August 23, 2023. Image credit: Office of Alderwoman Julia Ramírez

“Ald. Julia Ramirez (12th) is pushing the city to delay permits to demolish the Damen Silos as neighbors keep pushing to save the site.

“MAT Limited bought the silos and its 23.4-acre plot at 2900 S. Damen Ave. from the state late last year and is applying for five permits to demolish the buildings. MAT Limited is co-owned by Michael Tadin Jr., his father, Michael Tadin Sr., and his sister. Michael Tadin Jr. is also co-owns MAT Asphalt in McKinley Park.

“Ramirez said in a statement Wednesday she sent a letter to the city’s Department of Buildings asking the city’s permit review be delayed “until an agreement can be reached between [the] city, the current property owner, and community groups on future redevelopment plans for the site,” she said.

“‘I stand with my community and their efforts to preserve the historic Damen Grain silos and to repurpose them in a way that will not only honor the legacy of industry on the Southwest Side of Chicago, but also create equitable economic development opportunities with recreational green space along the riverfront,’ Ramirez said.

“It’s unclear how long the permit review process takes, or if the city is considering Ramirez’s request. A spokesperson for the Department of Buildings didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

“‘I cannot control the pace of this process,’ Tadin said in a statement to Block Club. ‘What we can control is ensuring that the demolition and every other aspect of work on the parcel is done in a first-class, respectful manner that complies with all regulations.’

An overwhelming majority of residents who spoke up during the community meeting Tuesday night said they were against demolishing the silos.

“Ramirez said she wants the city and MAT Asphalt to find a consensus with neighbors on what could be built on the site.

“‘It is important that there be more community engagement and a real commitment by the city to consider alternative scenarios, and explore the possibility of expediting landmarking the site to help preserve the structure and create more public access to the site,’ she said in her statement.” (Savedra, Block Club Chicago, 8/25/23)

Read the full story at Block Club Chicago

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