Evanston’s City Council is scheduled to begin its review of plans for a 60-unit all-subsidized housing development at 504-514 South Blvd. Monday night.

The five-story project, from Cleveland-based PIRHL LLC, would replace four Housing Authority of Cook County townhomes and a portion of an underutilized city-owned parking lot.

The Land Use Commission last month recommended approval of the project on a 5-1 vote.

The commission suggested adding a designated loading berth to the development.

City staff says that would require removing four dedicated off-street parking spaces, and staff is supporting an alternative proposal from the developer to instead create a designated loading area at the western edge of the extended portion of Hinman Avenue.

The project has been approved by the Illinois Housing Development Authority to use Low Income Housing Tax Credits, described in a city staff memo as “the most important resource for creating affordable housing in the United States today.”

The development would include 30 one-bedroom, 12 two-bedroom and 18 three-bedroom units.

One bedroom units would have an average 610 square feet, two-bedrooms 855 square feet and three bedroom units would range from 1,050 to 1,115 square feet in size.

Monthly rents, depending on tenant income, would range from $556 to $1,573 for a one-bedroom unit, $1,336 to $1,804 for a two-bedroom and $1,544 to $1,988 for a three-bedroom.

Tenants with incomes ranging from 30% to 80% of area medium income would qualify for occupancy..

For a family of four, the 80% of area median income level is currently $88,240.

The project plan calls for rezoning the site from R-4 to R-5 to permit the proposed five-story height.

Assuming the plans are approved for introduction Monday night, the Council could take a final vote to approve them at its next regular meeting on Oct. 23.

Given that the Council has previously voted to redevelop the parking lot with affordable housing and to select PIRHL as the developer, it appears likely that the project will win Council approval this month.

Update: 10/10/23: The South Boulevard development drew praise from council members on the Planning and Development Committee Monday night and was approved for introduction by the City Council on a 8-0 vote.

PIRHL’s project was approved for tax credit financing by the state earlier this year.

Meanwhile, just across the border in Rodgers Park, Block Club Chicago reports that a development that did not win LIHTC approval in that round is scrambling to reconfigure its plans to move forward.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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