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Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Avondale

100-Unit Affordable Housing Project Next To Logan Square Blue Line Station Could Be Finished By End Of 2021

"We want to see these apartments go to people who have been forced out of our neighborhood," Bickerdike CEO Joy Aruguete said of the Emmett Street apartments.

Construction on the 100-unit affordable housing development at 2602-38 N. Emmett St.
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LOGAN SQUARE — Despite “supply chain disruptions” brought on by the pandemic, construction crews have made considerable progress on the 100-unit affordable housing complex next to the Logan Square Blue Line station.

If things continue to go as planned, the seven-story complex at 2602-38 N. Emmett St. — a project that has come to define the gentrification fight in Logan Square — should be finished by the end of the year or in January 2022, officials with Bickerdike Redevelopment Corp. said this week.

Though there is a lot of work to be done, Bickerdike has opened up applications for the 50 apartments meant for Chicago Housing Authority voucher holders. People who want to live in one of those apartments can fill out an application online now, Bickerdike CEO Joy Aruguete said at a community meeting Wednesday.

To fill out an application, go to the site, click on “Submit A New Application” and then search for “Project Based Voucher properties” to find Emmett Street Apartments.

The complex is being built as Logan Square continues to see gentrification-fueled displacement, Aruguete said. In recent years, the neighborhood has lost more than 20,000 Latino residents, the largest demographic shift of any city neighborhood.

“There’s so many people who have been displaced out of Logan Square, so many Latinos who have been displaced out of Logan Square and out of the larger West Town and Humboldt Park communities,” she said. “Emmett Street Apartments represents a way to stay in the community in quality affordable housing.

“We want to see these apartments go to people who have been forced out of our neighborhood.”

Credit: Courtesy of Bickerdike Redevelopment Corp.
An aerial view of the construction project.

The $40.5 million project is about seven years in the making. For years, community leaders, including Ald. Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (35th), have fought to build an all-affordable housing complex next to the Logan Square station to combat displacement in the neighborhood.

Along the way, the project has picked up many supporters as well as some fierce opponents. In March 2020, a group of Logan Square property owners filed a lawsuit against the developer and the city, arguing replacing a parking lot with 100 subsidized apartments would cause them “irreparable injury.” The lawsuit was dismissed in mid-June after a Cook County Circuit judge ruled it lacked standing.

The complex is replacing an under-used parking lot, which was previously owned by the city. It’s being financed through a combination of Tax Increment Finance dollars, tax exempt bonds and Chicago Housing Authority funding.

Of the 100 affordable apartments, half will be earmarked for Chicago Housing Authority voucher holders, and the other half will be targeted to people making less than 60 percent of the area median income. The cap is $39,180 per year for an individual and $55,920 per year for a family of four.

In addition to 100 affordable apartments, the complex will include about 4,300 square feet of retail space facing Kedzie Avenue.

The seven-story structure was completed in early April. Now, crews are doing interior work, like installing the electrical and plumbing systems, said Bickerdike communications manager Libby Julia-Vazquez.

Construction has gone smoothly in spite of “supply chain disruptions” caused by the pandemic, Bickerdike officials said on Twitter earlier this year.

Bickerdike officials plan to open up a waitlist for the apartments not meant for CHA voucher holders in early to mid-summer. Those interested in applying should sign up for Bickerdike’s newsletter via the developer’s website.

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