BUCKTOWN — It’s been nearly six months since the city ordered HGTV’s “Windy City Rehab” to stop work on a handful of Chicago homes amid a litany of building code violations.
Going into 2020, however, neighbors might notice resumed work at some of the show’s properties.
The city has lifted nearly a dozen stop work orders since the summer, said Gregg Cunningham, a Department of Buildings spokesman.
“Windy City Rehab” co-stars Alison Victoria Gramenos and Donovan Eckhardt are still banned from applying for new building permit applications.
What they can do is slowly resume work on existing rehabs — if they follow the rules.
“It’s only to correct past violations,” Cunningham said.
In other words, HGTV doesn’t have free reign to rehab the entire Windy City.
This is “in effect indefinitely until the issues at all these properties have been addressed to satisfaction of the Department of Buildings,” Cunningham said. “We’re still monitoring the work closely, watching for any attempt to file a permit using a different name. [We are] watching closely for any attempt to circumvent our process here.”
As of Friday, of the 15 properties associated with the TV show, 12 await final inspections and two have been given the green light to resume work.
The former Miko’s Italian Ice building, 1846 N. Damen Ave., is the only property with an active stop work order.
Properties completely in the clear are 1803 W. Wabansia Ave. and 1906 N. Hoyne Ave. in Bucktown.
View a map of properties and their latest work status here.
RELATED: Windy City Rehab’s Work In Chicago Over For Now As City Blocks Future Permits Indefinitely
Neither Gramenos nor spokespeople for HGTV have responded to multiple interview requests.
In July, an HGTV spokesperson said “issues related to ‘Windy City Rehab’ have been carefully reviewed” and “appropriate parties are in communication with local building officials and working to resolve any outstanding issues.”
Earlier this year, the city slapped 12 stop work orders on the show’s properties after discovering a litany of code violations.
According to Buildings Department records, “Windy City Rehab” projects were in violation of:
- Working without permits at 11 properties
- Working beyond the scope of pulled permits at 11 properties
- Failure to comply with safety codes related to issues such as electrical wiring. In early April, two different electrical code violations were issued at 1846 N. Damen Ave.
- Failure to contact the city to obtain certificates of occupancy at two properties
- Hiring workers who are not licensed, certified or registered by the city at 11 properties
- Lying on a permit application at 11 properties
- Performing work that poses an “immediate or imminent threat” to the safety of workers or the public at 11 properties
View the full list of violations here.
Shortly after, Gramenos and Eckhardt lost their permit application privileges.
The permit application suspension remains in effect for the following people and entities:
- Alison Victoria Gramenos
- T. Donovan Eckhardt, Jr.
- Alovan, LLC
- Alovanward, LLC
- Hot N Cold, LLC
- Greymark Development
Additionally, Eckhardt and his company, Greymark Development, lost their licenses through September.
Iit appears HGTV and Gramenos might be cutting ties with Eckhardt; according to an active building permit at 1815 W. Augusta Blvd., a different contractor — ECM Builders — was hired to finish the job.
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