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Historic Andersonville Home Survives Possible Demolition, Will Be Restored Instead

The historic home at 1436 W. Berwyn has been sold to a family that plans on restoring the property instead of the previous owner’s intended plans of demolition.

The previous owner of 1436 Berwyn, developer Aidan Development, was planning on demolishing most if not all of the building. Those plans set off a battle in the community to save the structure. The developer enlisted local architect Jack Stoneberg of Stoneberg & Gross Architects to design a multi-unit condo building for the site.

1436 W. Berwyn was built in 1908 by two local Swedish immigrant brothers, Christ and John Christiansen. The rare 2-flat graystone is one of the most ornamental buildings in Edgewater. The building, which sits on an extra large 50′ x 125′ lot, is a perfect candidate for a tear-down. The low purchase price Aidan Development paid mixed with the wide lot means a developer can come in, demolish the property, construct a condo building and make a nice profit. In addition, most of East Andersonville is zoned R4, which means larger multi-story buildings can be built on the site.

However, after intense community pressure, the developer agreed to give realtor Maureen Murnane one month to find a new buyer. That timeline was met with the new purchaser who is eager to restore the property. A contract has been signed and the closing is nearing completion according to sources.

“When the sale of this property is completed it will preserve this historic building for years to come,” said Alderman Harry Osterman in a statement. “This would not have happened without the efforts of neighbors who fought to ensure the building would not come down. A special thank you to the East Andersonville Residents Council members and neighbors on Berwyn Ave. who were very vocal on this issue.” 

The fight has brought the neighborhood together as they try to develop stricter guidelines to help prevent such problems in the future.


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