Recap: Planning and Development Committee

A rendering of the latest design for the 1815 Ridge planned development up for debate tonight.

Here's a recap of our live coverage of tonight's Evanston City Councl Planning and Development Committee meeting.

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 6:45 p.m.

A packet with information on tonight's agenda items is available online.

Meeting called to order at 6:51 p.m.

P1 - Plat of subdivision for 1900-1904 Asbury Ave. Approved.

P2 - Change to notice requirements for planning and zoning cases. (Contract to third-party service. Have applicants pay the cost.)

Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, why can't leave the job to the applicant.

Mark Muenzer, community development director, says want to have staff in the loop on compiling the list of people to be given notice.

Approved.

P 3 - 1815 Ridge planned development

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Developer Michael McLean says has made several changes to reduce the height of the building by about 20 percent. Switching to provide more assisted living, and less independent living units in the building -- which reduces total space required.

Developer presentation

Says most of the employees will not have to drive to work -- because htey've be provided with bus passes, a company-run shuttle bus service, and other benefits.

Hopes to have all employees be residents of Evanston.

Ryan Housekeeper of Ridgeline Management says company focuses on maximizing health of residents and is happy to be in Evanston with the resources of Northwestern University.

Neighbors presidentation by Dan Schapiro, attorney for 1800 and 1804 Ridge condo associations.

Says appreciates the developers changes

Says although it is compliant with zoning code, says height is not compatible with surrounding buildings.

Neighbors' presentation.

Says developer hasn't done enough to justify the density proposed.

Says the project, because of changes to it, should be sent back to the Plan Commission

Alderman Judy Fiske, 1st Ward, asks why changed the unit mix.

McLean says it was dictated by the desire of community to shrink the size of the building. Says independent living units are 400 to 500 square feet, compared to 800 square feet for independent living units.

Fiske asks about why its treated as independent living versus sheltered care.

Damir Latinovic, city zoning administrator, says state doesn't classify this facility as sheltered care but rather as independent living -- and the city zoning should match.

McLean says because of state licensing couldn't operate this building as a sheltered care facility.

Says the difference between a dwelling unit and a rooming unit is that a rooming unit doesn't have a kitchen.

Public Comment

Robert Canazaro, 1800 Ridge, says wants the laundry site to be developed with a successful project. Says the project proposed is not consistent with downtown plan and the zoning ordinance.

Says it's a single use building --and that doesn't contribute to a healthy urban environment -- says it needs retail.

Says concerned about height and building and parking. Says the quality of the architecture leaves a lot to be desired.

Says the use is not compatible with the exceptionally noisy site. Says the aesthetics are unfortunate.

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Alderman Eleanor Revelle, 7th Ward, asks about kitchens in the independent living units.

McLean says all potential residents will be screened by physician to evaluate their health status.

Memory care units won't have cooktops -- be like an extended stay hotel -- maybe a mini-fridge.

Some of the assisted living units will have small kitchens, others will not.

Independent living units will have typical apartment kitchens.

Says almost entire third floor will be amenities -- with kitchen, dining room, business center, gardening, large outdoor patios, etc.

Revelle asks whether have a sister relationship with other facilities -- for people who no longer be able to live in assisted living.

Housekeeper says will be working to develop that. Says always building relationships in its markets with skilled nursing facilities.

Alderman Don Wilson, 4th Ward, asks about pricing.

Housekeeper says... not a buy-in facility like the Mather ...fees be perhaps $3,950 for indepenent living ...$5K on the assisted living side ... for memory care be around $7K per month.

Wilson says the vote tonight is to introduce it ... will be further discussion at City Council in two weeks.

Vote on introduction is 4-1 with Fiske voting no.

Meeting adjourned at 7:46 p.m.

City Council meeting to begin shortly.

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