Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Wilson Yard Revelation? Sayonara Target!

An anonymous birdie wrote in to "Uptown Update" with the following juicy tidbit:

"A very reliable resource told me that Target is definitely not coming to Uptown, despite all the contrary comments coming out of Shiller's office.

One prominent northside alderman, not from the 46th ward, stated off-the-record, that Target has pulled out of Wilson Yard. This information was also confirmed by another prominent alderman's business development employee. NO Target for Wilson Yard. But, hey, those of us who live here already knew that..."

Give the 46th Ward office a call at 773-878-4646 and see what sort of spin you can get. All we know is that we are starting to get very dizzy.


  1. Wow I think this great news! Who ever runs against her in 4 years can use this against her. What will say to defend her lies on Target?

    Helen is toast after these 4 years.

    Can we stop the project based on Target not coming?

    Where are the Feds I think Alderman that lie should be held accountable.

  2. I am sure this is why the project has yet to start.

  3. unfortunately, four years is a long time to wait for Shiller to feel the effects.

    But I am curious as to what people think about ways to stop this project or get the tribune or someone to do some real investigative journalism. Because this means there is ABSOLUTELY NO COMMITTED COMMERCIAL/RETAIL in the project now. I'd rather see the whole thing scrapped and started over than construction of a new Cabrini. For better or worse, at least the approved plan was still a mixed use plan (however, much many of us think it was a ridiculously poor urban planning solution). Now it is a low-income housing plan.

    It's time someone from some journalist organization in town earn a paycheck and cover this Wilson Yard story properly.

  4. Well I would like to cook Helen on medium and then boil her on high 6 months before the next election.

    I also want TV ads with quotes on this project and how she lied.
    "What's She Thinking" It's going to be hoot seeing her lose in 4 years.

    See politicians never know when to step down. One thing to think about the theaters and the Targets don't want to anchor Cabrini North!

  5. Figures. I just called Helen's office asking them to confirm or deny this rumor. They denied. The woman on the phone told me that there were a few problems with the soil testing and that's why the project is on hold. Interested, there were no problems with the soil when they built the Aldi. She also gave me the number to the developer, Joe Dunne 312-337-5339, if anyone wants to do some investigating.

    Is there a way to impeach aldermen?

  6. You know with the itenet Shiller could give a up to date report weekly on her site.

    Impeach Shiller Can We? I would be all for it.

    I wonder if she knows how many people can't stand her in Uptown?


    If you are going to be mean to the alderbeast please, please spell correctly.

    Thank you and goodnight.

  8. Boiling, cooking, or microwaving the alderbeast is not appropriate.

    Voting her out is.

  9. Mocking her with "Dear Helen" letters is appropriate, too.

    Try it. You'll like it.

  10. Anonymous you said someone in the alderman's office
    "also gave me the number to the developer, Joe Dunne 312-337-5339, if anyone wants to do some investigating."
    I don't understand this at all the developer is Holsten. Who is this Joe Dunne?

  11. experienced,

    a quick google search shows that the phone number is for Holsten; i would assume that joe dunne is someone who works for Holsten.

  12. Kinda of makes the "Open Letter" from the alderman's office even funnier:

    (Paraphrasing) "The financing for the store, the housing and theatres is intertwined. If you want one, you have to have them all."

    Except the store and the theatres, apparently.

  13. This may be addition by subtraction but I am very concerned that Wilson Yard will only be housing.

    I support the idea of informing local newspapers of Wilson Yard. Schiller needs more pressure because the mismanagement is unbelieveable. More than ever, we need to make sure this project moves forward as mixed-use. If it's just low-income housing, we need to stop it. Building just to build does not help Uptown.

  14. Lorraine Swanson of the Pioneer Press is very interested in Uptown issues,708-524-4422 or

  15. At the Wilson Yard Task Force meeting last spring, someone questioned the environmental cleanup and developer Holsten assured the group not to worry because it was all taken care of. It's the ole fox guarding the henhouse scenario. Apparently, a number of neighborhood groups didn't quite see it that way and complained to the EPA.

    Looks like EPA got pretty good at fox hunting.

  16. Since the Wilson yards is such a sham and a huge waste of tax payers money thus far - Is there any one else out there that thinks the the other demon in this plan is da mayor? He has endorse hs and given her money and man power to subvert the will of the voters - Why don't we start causing his honorless a little headache by protesting on the fifth floor of city hall? hs is a hemmoroid, but daley is the one calling the shots -
    and like all bullies, his honorless can't stand the heat -
    we need to put pressure on him - after all it's his people that have approved this disaster.
    Am I the only one to think this?
    I am really angry and fed up with living in daley's dumping ground.

  17. I think we should stage a protest in front of the Wilson Yard site....or Shiller's office. That's one way the press has taken notice of our cause in the past. I really think we should do it, say next Saturday office hours that Shiller has. We could walk from her office to Wilson Yard and stage a sit in....stating we're not willing to leave until some one provides us with some real answers!! Okay, maybe I got a little carried away with the "sit in", but I do think we need to plan something - and now!

  18. Daley is letting Shiller do whatever she wants as long as she's a good little girl and votes exactly as he wants her to. That's what he does with all the aldermen he controls.

    Look at Tom Tunney giving Bernie Stone $10,000 from his own campaign funds. Do you really think Tommy Boy cares for Bernie Stone? Da mayor who also controls Bernie and Tommy Boy wanted Bernie to stay as alderman so he gets Tommy Boy to help out Bernie. Tommy Boy originally got in offce as an appointee by da mayor so he owes da mayor big time. He ALWAYS follows his marching orders.

    Shiller knows that if she doesn't allow da mayor to control how she votes, da mayor will suddenly start becoming critical of Wilson Yard. The aldermen aren't the problem. It's da mayor who can do whatever the hell he wants.

  19. How is this good news? I was hoping good things, like a Target, would continue to happen in spite of Shiller. Guess I was hoping for to much.

  20. Well I don't think if a Target/Theaters went there the streets and hood could handle all the traffic.

  21. I doubt Jimbo's building/theaters on Lawrence will turn out like they are saying either.

  22. I’ve heard a lot of people want a Target.

    Have you ever noticed the neighborhoods that have a Target? The Wilson Yard TIF is supposed to encourage a vibrant, walkable community. Do you see that around the Targets at Peterson, Roosevelt, or Elston? I’m guessing anywhere between 95 to 99% of the shoppers at Target get to those Targets by car. The stores that surround them are typically all franchises.

    Do you think the Target in Wilson Yard would be different enough than all the other stores so that this one would really encourage pedestrian traffic? Can you find any examples anywhere in the U.S. where a Target promoted pedestrian traffic? Have you seen smaller independent stores pick up their business as a direct result of a Target moving in?

    I like Target and I shop at Target. I don’t want a Target at the Wilson Yard.

  23. I'm not sure the point of the last anon post.

    I think everyone thought a target was a less-than-perfect anchor tenant. But there's also something to be said to an operating store attracting more attention than a hole in the ground.

    And I think that is the problem that most of us are expressing. Every commercial/retail component of WY has fallen apart. (Although I see now that people have taken to claiming Aldi as an accomplishment when I can remember not too long ago Aldi being described as outside of the scope of the actual WY project.) Our worry is that with the tribune and every newspaper failing to do any real reporting that might involve, you know, investigation versus repeating the b.s. that the PR people sling, we are going to find that the WY project doesn't die the happy death it deserves but instead becomes just a mega-complex of low-income housing with no commercial retail component. (Oh, they'll build some new, vacant storefronts. They just won't have any tenants.)

    That's what is so frustrating. It feels as though this is a real news story that is ignored because, quite frankly, it's Uptown and the papers can't be bothered to care about what happens there unless it meets the needs of filling the police blotter or who has been murdered segment of their news coverage.

  24. Start forwarding this post to all the news stations and newspapers in Chicago. They all have "NewsTip" links. Its sad to say, but it may take a slow news day for them to take notice.

  25. > The woman on the phone told me that there were a few problems with the soil testing and that's why the project is on hold.

    TIF projects have this arc to them if you study them.

    The additional soil testing is may appear to be a variance from the PUBLIC schedule, but it is in fact an indication that the project is right on the PRIVATE schedule and the PRIVATE budget.

    State TIF law prohibits using TIF dollars for brick&mortar construction costs, but environmental remediation is all good. So once your PUBLIC budget & subsidies are in place, you order up some additional testing and soon enough property taxpayers are on the hook to dig out your below-ground parking area for you.

    Don't worry, it's all part of the plan.

  26. A number of people have asked me if I know what's going on in the Wilson Yard. I've heard people say they have spoken with Target reps who claim Target is going in, and then there are these e-mails from Target reps who claim to know nothing of a Target going into the Wilson Yard.

    All I can say is this: It's rather unusual for Target to remain so mum when that is not their standard of practice elsewhere. Like many others, I can say that I'll believe it when I see it.

    Regardless, I think it's fair to say that we're all seeing a consistent pattern of Ald. Shiller saying one thing to us and we end up experiencing a different reality.

  27. Will target be here in Uptown? Unknown. But what we do know is... SHILLER SUCKS!

  28. Any recent updates? Obviously Shiller and Holsten did not meet their September start they described in June.