Evanston could be seeing its first large-scale condominium development after 10 years of struggling with a real estate crash.
At an Oct. 24 community meeting at The Merion, Jeff Michael, chief operating officer of Horizon Realty Group, revealed that their proposed high-rise on 1621 Chicago Ave. could be developed as a high-end condo.
“We’re looking at both the condo and rental models very closely,” Michael said in a report published in Evanston Now, “and I feel there is strong demand for luxury condominiums.”
Designed by Pappageorge Haymes Partners, the building known as The Legacy will stand 216 ft. tall with 215 units, 149 parking spaces and storage for over 100 bikes. Pappageorge Partner Timothy Kent said the ground floor will deliver an estimated 3,700 sq. ft of commercial space while floors two through seven will house residential units. Parking space will be located at the rear.
If approved, the building will replace a single story storefront row. It will be constructed beside another Horizon development, The Merion, which recently underwent renovation costing more than $40 million.
A majority of the residents present at the meeting voiced objections. A Park Evanston resident living across the street complained she will lose her views of the Arrington Lagoon, and a 522 Church resident said the tower will cast shadows into her apartment.
Others also claimed parking will be insufficient and will cause parking congestion in the alley behind the building. They also asserted that The Legacy will harm building values of properties on Hinman and Judson avenues.
Furthermore, Dean Francis, senior pastor of the nearby First United Methodist Church, pointed out that the project will “completely ignore the heritage” of Evanston.
Developers have yet to submit formal plans to the city.