Risk and Reward in Play With Wrigleyville Developments
Blair Kamin provides commentary on the large-scale redevelopment going on in the neighborhood immediately surrounding Wrigley Field in Chicago—finding reasons to be concerned that the quality of future developments will match the neighborhoods role as a hub of activity in the city.
"The outcome will speak to an issue that resounds far beyond Chicago: Whether public officials can effectively manage the growing phenomenon of 'transit-oriented development,' which encourages high-density construction near transit and commuter rail stops to cut down on car use and save energy," writes Kamin
Two of the larger projects under discussion $2.1 billion Red and Purple lines modernization project, which requires the demolition of 14 structures, and a $1 billion investment by the Cubs that includes renovations at the ballpark, a new outdoor plaza, a new office building for the team, and a new hotel. Nearby there's also a new development called Addison & Clark, an eight-story building that includes apartments, shops, and a movie theater.
With all of this development potential, Kamin sees need for a warning.
Transit-oriented development — TOD, for short — may sound good in theory, but some developers use it as an pretext for bulked-up buildings that are oversized eyesores and dwarf their delicate-scaled neighborhoods. Examples now blight the otherwise attractive downtowns of suburbs like Wilmette and La Grange.
Kamin offers prescription to prevent TOD, which you can read at the full article.