The terms of a third of the members of Evanston’s Land Use Commission are scheduled to expire before the anticipated vote on Northwestern University’s Ryan Field project this fall.
But Mayor Daniel Biss tells Evanston Now he plans to reappoint all three of the commissioners affected, with his action scheduled for City Council approval at its Sept. 26 meeting.
The three commissioners involved are John Hewko, whose first term on the commission ended Aug. 5; Max Puchtel, whose first term is scheduled to end Saturday, and Myrna Arevalo, whose second term is scheduled to end on Sept. 28.
Hewko was absent from Wednesday night’s first round of the commission’s hearing on the Ryan Field project, but the commission’s practice when hearings stretch over multiple meetings has been to let commissioner’s absent from a previous session vote on the issue if they have watched the video of the meeting they missed.
The other eight members of the commission were present for Wednesday’s hearing.
The commission is scheduled to continue its Ryan Field hearing on Sept. 27 and is expected to not make a recommendation to the City Council about the project until a third meeting scheduled for Oct. 11.
The university is seeking approval to replace the nearly century old stadium and to hold up to six concerts a year at the field. Proposed seating capacity for the concerts would be up to 28,500 people.
The Land Use Commission was created in late 2021 by an ordinance that combined two existing bodies, the Plan Commission and the Zoning Board of Appeals, into the new entity with the existing members of those bodies forming the initial Land Use Commission.
Members of the prior panels were appointed to three-year terms, with a limit of serving for two terms.
The Land Use Commission ordinance permits members to serve up to two four-year terms, and it does not specify whether service on the prior bodies counts toward the term limit.