The proposed nine-story, 242-unit planned development at 831 Emerson St. is up for review by the Evanston City Council this evening.

The project would replace existing one and two story buildings housing a dry cleaners and a convenience store.

A view of 831 Emerson from Benson Avenue (Google Maps).

This is the second time around for a development proposal for the site.

A previous plan, that initially called for a 14-story building, was rejected by the City Council in February 2016, largely because the developer planned to focus on renting to students. The new project scraps that concept — which involved leasing spaces by the bedroom, rather than by the apartment unit.

The new proposal calls for a variety of site development allowances that are within the council’s power to grant under the zoning ordinance.

They include doubling the maximum number of dwelling units allowed by right under the zoning code, increasing the building height from 67 to 103 feet and reducing the number of parking spaces from 358 to 174.

Nearby uses include an 11-story senior housing development and a 10-story Northwestern University graduate student housing building.

The plans include a new 3,000 square foot retail space for the 7-Eleven convenience store operator now on the property.

The latest version of the proposal was approved by the Plan Commission last month on a 6-1 vote.

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Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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