Aldermen tonight consider two proposals to deal with what many residents see as an affordable housing crisis in Evanston.

The Darrow Corners proposal for 27 units of rent-to-own housing targeted to persons earning 60 percent of the metro area’s median income and the Church Street Village proposal for 40 townhouses with prices starting at $360,000 are both on the agenda of a special Planning & Development Committee meeting at 7:30 p.m.


The Darrow Corners site at Church Street and Darrow Avenue.

The Darrow Corners proposal, for a vacant lot at Church Street and Darrow Avenue, has support from the Evanston Community Development Corporation and other groups, but has run into opposition from nearby property owners who say it would concentrate too many poor people with little financial stake in the community in what’s already an economically distressed area.

Architect’s drawing of the Church Street Village proposal.

The Church Street Village proposal, a block further east across the former Mayfair railroad right-of-way at the former Hines lumberyard, is promoted by its developer as targeted to school teachers and other working professionals. It has been scaled back in response to criticism from from its neighbors to the east, but still includes more units than some neighbors want.

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Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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