When Evanston closed out its Downtown II tax increment financing district this year, the area was generating $9 million more annually in property tax revenue than it had 23 years earlier when the district was formed.

To dramatize the changes at the Joint Review Board meeting Thursday, Planning and Zoning Manager Dennis Marino showed off this 1980s vintage photo looking northwest from what’s now the Rotary International building.

If you’ve lived in Evanston for a while, perhaps you can name the old buildings in this photo yourself and recognize what they’ve been replaced with.

The TIF district that’s closed for the most part covered the area between the rail lines, from Davis Street at the bottom left of the photo to Emerson Street — just barely visible in the background.

In the 1980s it consisted largely of city and university-owned property that was off the tax rolls. Assistant City Manager Marty Lyons says the TIF district has led to a 1000 percent increase in the taxable value of the land.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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1 Comment

  1. Nice

    Good job with the TIF district, the $9 million revenue increase is proof it that it worked.  And we’re retiring the TIF?  Wow, that would never happen in Chicago, they just live on and on, like the tollways.  Double-good-news!

    Cool photo; I can see Dave’s Italian Kitchen over by the L tracks, I’ve eaten lots of nice meals there.  But my apartment in this photo looks pretty much the same as now (sigh!).

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