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

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7:15 p.m.

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

Meeting called to order.

1941 Jackson Avenue

Project to have Evanston Township High School students learn building trades skills by building a home to be located at 1941 Jackson Ave., a vacant lot that was acquired by the city as part of the federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program grant.

Bill Stafford from the high school says they hope to build a house each year. House will be built on the high school’s campus and then trucked to the new home site.

Are various tax credits and other funding mechanisms involved.

Community Partners for Affordable Housing will be a partner on the project..

Shelley Gates, of the high school’s career education department, says probably wouldn’t have been able to do the project on their own. Project has been running in a school in Lowell, Col. seven or eight years ago.

Says will be working on math skills, especially geometry, as well as construction skills — and will also learn a lot of softer skills — of teamwork and collaboration.

Alderman Jane Grover, 7th Ward, asks what the budget is. Stafford says it will involve $40K to $50K in materials plus cost for contractors and in-kind donations.

Grover says may be opportunities for crowd funding — as city did with trees this year.

Stafford says it’s not an isolated class — that curriculum is moving more and more to learning by doing. Have robotics class building robots, for example. This summer had 15 ETHS faculty members doing training session at the Ford design center at Northwestern.

Says also provides critical thinking skills for students.

Rob from CPAH says his organization will provide access to the tax credits and also will help screen potential buyers and provide homei-owner training.

Alderman Delores Holmes, 5th Ward, says she’s super-excited about the project — went over to visit the classroom where the students will be working this summer.

Says it’s a good way to be able to use land that was banked as part of the NSP2 program — a good way to make sure that will be able to keep affordable housing going in the community.

Alderman Melissa Wynne, 3rd Ward, says she thinks its a fantastic program.

Approved unanimously.

Meeting adjourned at 7:45 p.m.

City Council meeting will start at 8 p.m.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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1 Comment

  1. This is education equality

    It's about time that we realized that not everyone is ment to be college bound.  Educating someone to be a good carpenter, plumber, auto mechanic or any other trade skilled professional is just as important as educating an individual to be a doctor, lawyer, accountant, etc…

    Implement this program and I'll bet that most of the kids involved will look forward to going to school every day so they can complete their education/home.  And when it's finally placed on it's foundation at 1941 Jackson they will be able to take their friends by and say with honesty and pride  "I built that".   

     

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