May 6, 2014

Mayor Emanuel Announces Expansion Of The Large Lot Program To The East Garfield Park Community

Expansion Allows East Garfield Park Residents to Purchase Vacant Lots for $1; Follows Success of the Englewood Large Lot Pilot

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Following the successful launch of the Large Lot Pilot Program in the Greater Englewood community, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the Department of Planning & Development (DPD) today announced the expansion of the Large Lot Program to the East Garfield Park neighborhood, enabling homeowners, block-clubs and non-profit groups in East Garfield Park community to purchase City-owned land for $1 per parcel.

“Expanding the Large Lot program to East Garfield Park is an important step in our efforts to partner with Chicagoans who are working to help strengthen our communities,” said Mayor Emanuel. “The pilot program’s success in Englewood is a testament to the strides the City’s ‘Five-Year Housing Plan’ is making toward revitalizing our neighborhoods and empowering communities.”

The Large Lot program was launched this spring as a pilot in the greater Englewood area where more than four thousand lots were eligible for community acquisition. Over 500 lots have been applied for from over 400 received applications, which are now under review by the Department Planning and Development.

Due to the interests and success following the Large Lot Pilot Program in Englewood, the Mayor’s office and DPD are expanding the program East Garfield Park. Applications to purchase 500 city-owned lots will be available starting July 1st of 2014.

Among the requirements to qualify, applicants must own property on the same block in the community area; be current on property taxes; and have no financial obligations to the City. Lots proposed for purchase must be owned by the city, be vacant, and have residential (R) zoning. Properties will be sold “as is” via a quit claim deed. Eligible applicants will be able to purchase up to two parcels under the program.

“Given the program’s success in the Englewood community, we are proud to expand this promising revitalization opportunity to East Garfield Park,” said DPD Commissioner Andrew J. Mooney. “The expansion of the Large Lot program will enable East Garfield Park residents to invest in their communities and transform underutilized land into neighborhood assets.”

The Large Lot Program is the first initiative launched by the City as part of its Five Year Housing Plan, which will invest $1.3 billion in spending from 2014-2018 to create, improve, and preserve more than 41,000 units of housing. DPD developed the plan with help from more than 120 housing experts, activists, builders and owners. The process was driven by a 20-member steering committee supported by a 60-member advisory group.

Previously paper-based, one of the improvements for expansion of the program to East Garfield Park will be an all-electronic application process. Additional information and electronic applications is available at