Sunday, May 23, 2010

Where's The "Affordable Housing" Component?

A reader poses an interesting question: 

In everything we've read about the new controversial hotel/ housing/ retail complex scheduled to go up in Wrigleyville, where's the requisite affordable housing component?  Surely that's not just required for neighborhoods north of Irving Park Road?


  1. Nice

  2. I thought the same thing. This city is so full of corruption it just stinks! The 46th ward is a dump(ing ground), and Helen is to blame!

  3. Well, how is it being funded? If it's being funded by a private developer, and not TIF funds, as far as I know, there's no requirement for affordable housing.

  4. Actually, if you read the ordinance developers can choose to either allot 10% of the housing units as "affordable" -or- can make a cash contribution to the city's affordable housing fund which can be used to fund housing in other parts of the city including homeless shelters. Usually for large developments, the affordable housing contribution is part of the negotiations for the PUD (Planned Unit Development).

  5. According to the information given to the people at the Maryville meeting, the component is 20%, and there is no cash contribution option.

    Just sayin'

  6. toto is correct.

    and yes, there is a fund to pay into if they wish to not include the affordable housing in their development.

    "(1) A developer subject to the provisions of subsections (b) or (c), may establish affordable housing by one or more of the following: (i) the development of affordable housing units as part of the residential housing project;
    (ii) payment of a fee in lieu of the development of affordable housing units; or (iii) any combination thereof. The amount of the fees described in clause
    (d)(1)(ii) shall be $100,000.00 for each affordable housing unit not developed as part of the residential housing project, adjusted annually based upon the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers for the Chicago metropolitan area, or some other
    comparable index selected by the commissioner in his reasonable discretion if this index no longer exists."

  7. So basically what happens is this...

    Developer gets TIF money + Developer must make affordable housing contribution = TIF money being spent on affordable housing without developer having to make any contribution.

  8. "The City of Chicago's Affordable Requirements Ordinance requires residential developments that receive city financial assistance or involve city-owned land to provide a percentage of units at affordable prices."

    So, IS it being funded with help from the city, or on city owned land? If not, they probably don't have to provide the affordable component.

  9. I don't see any evidence that the Wrigleyville mall is TIF. It would appear to be a single real estate investor/consortium.

  10. i don't think there is any city involvement on the project, which would eliminate the affordable housing subsidy requirement, with one exception - if they're rezoning the property to allow for higher density development ... then they would be subject to the affordable housing requirement (and the options mentioned above for satisfying the requirement)

  11. Again, per the information provided during the meeting (not my opinion, just relaying what I was told):

    Any planned development has the 20% affordable housing requirement attached.

  12. Planned developments are all required to have affordable housing because to go from regular zoning to PUD you have a zoning change.

    But, that requirement for a percentage is fairly weasel worded and when they are negotiating the PUD the also negotiate the contribution.

    Also, please be sure and find out if there is a friends and family component via the alderman.

  13. Under the 2007 Affordable Requirements Ordinance, private developers on private land are required to follow what Toto outlined if:
    * The developer receives any type of City land, not just discounted City land
    * Any zoning change is granted that increases project density or allows a residential use not previously allowed
    * The development is a "planned development," except for developments outside of the downtown area that do not obtain residential density increases
    * the project receives financial assistance from the City (in this case, 20% of the units must be affordable).

    So, TIF assistance puts a development into the fourth category. I assume they will need a PD (planned development) for this project.

    Note that how "affordable" is defined in the ordinance is somewhat broad. The type of affordable housing provided - or if cash is provided instead - is largely a function of aldermanic and/or community desires.