July 22, 2020

New Park and Open Space Projects Proposed for Near North and North Sides


A new park and a pair of open space projects would be supported by more than $5.4 million in Open Space Impact Fees proposed to City Council today by Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot. The Open Space Impact Fee program allocates development fees paid by residential construction projects to improve and expand park spaces in each of the city’s 77 community areas.

DuSable Park, 400 N Lake Shore Dr.
The Chicago Park District’s long-planned Du Sable Park on the Near North Side would be supported through $5 million in Open Space Impact Fees. Located at the mouth of the Chicago River, the three-acre park is planned to include green space and landscaping, lighting, a plaza, seating areas and historical markers honoring Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, who became the area’s first non-indigenous settler when he lived along the river in the 1780s. The remainder of the $15 million-project would be financed by developer Related Midwest through a separate agreement involving a mixed-use project planned for adjacent property.

A.N. Pritzker School, 2009 W Schiller St.
Pritzker School in West Town would be reimbursed $400,000 in Open Space Impact Fees for the second phase of its outdoor school improvement project. The fees would pay for a new playground with rubber surfacing, new pathways, landscaping, and water fountains. The balance of the $540,000 project would be paid by a state grant. The project’s $1.4 million first phase included $100,000 in Open Space Impact Fee support for basketball courts, a running track, a multi-sport turf field, and a drainage system.

Montrose Metra Community Gardens, 4400 block of N Ravenswood Ave.
The expansion of the Montrose Metra Community Gardens in Lincoln Square would be financed through $91,000 in Open Space Impact Fees, which would reimburse the NeighborSpace Land Trust for the installation of raised beds, fencing, signage, and benches along a Metra railroad embankment. The balance of the $96,000 project is being financed through private donations. 


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