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Fierce Opposition To Andersonville Development Draws 150 Plus Attendees To Meeting, Developer a No-Show

Revised plans of 1436 Berwyn

A community meeting was held last night at the Swedish American Museum by Alderman Harry Osterman to go over an updated proposal concerning the possible  development at 1436 W. Berwyn. The event drew 150 plus residents, all concerned about the demolition of a historic graystone and the massive development to rise in its place.

The evening got off to a rough start after both the alderman and attendees seemed agitated that the developer, Aidan Dunican of Aidan Development, was a no-show at the meeting. However, both the architect (Jack Stoneberg of Stoneberg & Gross Architects) and the developer’s zoning attorney (Thomas Moore of Anderson & Moore PC) were there in Duncan’s absence.

The architect presented a revised version of an original plan which initially called for the demolition of the graystone on the property. The new plan however, still plans to demolish most of the building with only the facade and west wall remaining. A massive 6 unit, 4-level building is proposed to rise in its place as well as the open green space lot next to it.

The plan allows for six condos ranging from about 1500 sq. ft. to about 2300 sq. ft. There would also be a six car garage with roof deck in the back.

When residents were allowed to voice their opinion on the development, most were in agreement that the new plan was too large in scale and did not fit the neighborhood.

With that, the upzoning necessary to get the larger, revised plan off the ground would need Alderman Osterman’s approval. After a show of hands overwhelming voted against the new plans, the Alderman voiced his opposition as well adding he would not seek the upgraded zoning at this time.

“I want to save the building,” said Harry Osterman. “I will do everything possible to make sure neither proposal goes through.” With that he received a standing ovation.

Residents voiced that they were interested in finding another buyer for 1436 W. Berwyn that would be willing to preserve the home, the adjacent green space and the 110-year-old elm tree in the back. The developer has made no comments as to if he would be willing to sell the property at this time.

Osterman said there will be additional meeting on the issue, and hopefully the developer will be present at that time.

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