Thursday, May 4, 2023

Ald. Cappleman: 3,342 New Units Of Housing Added During His 3 Terms

One of the many developments adding needed housing, the 314 unit development at 
4600 N. Marine

Ald. Cappleman's latest newsletter features an eye-opening rundown of the top 43 major developments that have taken place during his 12 years in office from 2011-2023. Click here for a list. Chances are many of you are reading this on our blog or from Facebook or Twitter from one of these developments!

He goes on to say:

"I love the Phoenix Rising sculpture by artist Lucy Slivinski because it perfectly symbolizes the rebirth of the 46th Ward. If you told me 12 years ago that violent crime would be the lowest in its history and that Time-Out Magazine would name Uptown as the 24th coolest community on the planet, I would have never believed it. The last time this Ward experienced this amount of economic activity was over a hundred years ago. Of the major developments that are either completed or have been approved, 3 were on vacant lots, 11 included sites with underutilized parking lots, 5 involved existing buildings already slated for demolition, and 3 were buildings repurposed for housing. Smaller buildings with 9 units or less are not included in this count. In total, 3,342 new units of housing have either already been built or have plans to start construction soon. Click here to view the top 43 major projects that have occurred during my 3 terms in office.

There were many factors behind the remarkable changes that have occurred over the past 12 years. Here are 2 lessons I learned along the way that helped facilitate these needed changes:


Resolving any complex issue requires many different people with different perspectives all coordinating and collaborating with one another.

On June 28, 2013, my husband Richard Thale witnessed 5 people fall to the ground after getting shot at the corner of Lawrence & Sheridan. That was the day I started a task force that included CPD, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, the local businesses in the area, the local chamber, the CAPS Beat facilitator (Richard), and some neighbors in the area. We identified the issues, created interventions, and tweaked them as needed to ensure our efforts were reducing crime. 

Within 8 months, the 911 calls for that one small corner dropped from 20% of all calls for the entire 19th Police District to less than 1% of all calls for the district. Had we all worked independently from one another, we would still be spinning our wheels. We proved that the complex issue of public safety requires a coordinated and collaborative response from many people who have different perspectives. The same holds true for all complex issues that still need to be resolved.


Rely on valid and reliable research for guidance, even when it appears to be counterintuitive.

Even though I created a 46th Ward zoning committee that utilized a more inclusive and transparent process than any other ward in the City, there was still tension about the causes of increasingly high rents in the area. These concerns are valid; the 46th Ward’s greatest asset is its diversity and it deserves protection. Our main issue was everyone had a different opinion about how to keep our ward's diversity as the entire Northside was going through gentrification, especially along the Lakefront.

A UIC professor who focuses on the issue of gentrification in Uptown presented our zoning committee with a paper entitled The Effect of Market-Rate Development on Neighborhood Rents. It reviewed 6 different research articles that studied gentrification in hundreds of areas across the country with the goal of assessing whether or not building new housing developments, including ones that were high-end apartments, would cause other nearby rents to go up. To the surprise of many, 5 of the 6 studies showed that area rents actually went down when new developments were built. When rents are rising, it's primarily due to high demand for more units due to low apartment vacancies within a neighborhood. One study also showed that building more of any type of housing helps to protect the naturally occurring affordable housing (NOAH) in the area, which surpasses the combined total of all the CHA, HUD, and nonprofit housing in the Ward. That’s because people who want to move here will end up renting our NOAH if they can’t find the higher-priced rental unit they really want, and that’s what drives out people with lower incomes from a community. The sign that an area needs more development of any kind is when more NOAH in the area is getting bought and converted into higher-end rental units. Some may agree or disagree with the results of these studies, but as an elected official, I can’t afford to only rely on my personal opinion about what will resolve an issue.

As was true when I took office 12 years ago, I strongly believe the 46th Ward and this great city of ours will continue to move forward, and I think it will happen more easily when we involve others in solving complex issues, acknowledge expertise for guidance, and become more open to listening to others who don’t share our opinions. It’s when we come together that real miracles happen!"


  1. Alderman Cappleman did a great job. We were lucky to have him.

    Couple that with the hundreds or maybe 1000+ units in the north end of Uptown in the 48th Ward and it's a much more vibrant neighborhood.

    With our socialist betters being elected in the 46th and 48th wards I don't expect much new development.

    I do expect lotsa deeply meaningful sloganeering though followed

    1. BTW, have we gotten an update on Clay's PPE payments and IRS lien?

  2. Guaranteed the Uptown Theater will remain dormant another 4 years.

    1. How much money has been thrown at the Uptown Theater?

  3. I shop up that way a lot and always see new structures going up. It makes me want to move up to Uptown. Unfortunately the crazy people haven't moved along. The drunks and weirdos are still hanging around as if nothing has changed.

    1. We think the same thing about Lakeview every time we saunter down there, Lianna.

  4. The drunks and weirdos in Lakeview are still drunks and weirdos, but with bachelor's degrees from a local university. We are the real deal, not from Michigan U.