WIN: 1. Historic Berwyn Avenue Greystone Saved through Community Organizing Advocacy!

The intense, sustained and widespread opposition to the planned demolition and redevelopment of the historic greystone at 1436 W. Berwyn Avenue yielded a victory.

The beautifully ornamented limestone historic greystone at 1436 W. Berwyn Avenue was resold to a new preservation-sensitive buyer who has plans to deconvert the two flat to a single family home and to restore its historic features. Additionally, the landscaped side yard and mature elm tree will be preserved. The sale of this historic property removes it from the immediate threat posed by development plans to build a six-unit building on the site.

Preservation Chicago worked diligently with community partners and Alderman Osterman to bring about a preservation-oriented outcome for 1463 Berwyn Avenue. A special thanks for the extraordinary efforts of Kathy Klink-Flores of the Lakewood Balmoral Residents Council, Julie Wlach, Leslie Ames of the East Andersonville Residents Council, LeRoy Blommaert of the Edgewater Historical Society, Maureen Murnane of the Lakewood Balmoral Residents Council, and other community members and community organizations.

The collective impact of the rapid response preservation efforts created the circumstances which allowed other possible outcomes to emerge. We are thrilled that the efforts will result in a great win for the building, the Andersonville and Edgewater neighborhoods, and Chicago.

Preservation Chicago is highly concerned about the increasing number of historic building demolitions happening throughout the city. For every building save, many, many more historic homes are being lost. Developers are consistently willing to out-spend prospective home-owners in the absence of more aggressive historic landmark protection, down zoning, or demolition fees. This structural imbalance is cause for concern and will cause many more demolition emergency efforts in the future.

Preservation Chicago believes that it is in the best interest of the neighborhood, the alderman, and the developers to establish clear rules that pro-actively protect Chicago’s historic homes and neighborhoods. Unlike other historic neighborhoods whose historic fabric has been permanently impacted by frequent and widespread demolition, Andersonville and Edgewater are largely intact. We will continue to encourage preservation outcomes in this historic neighborhood.

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