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Uptown in the News  

September 22, 2004
City panel OKs plan for Wilson Yard

The Community Development Commission on Sept. 14 approved a plan to develop the five-acre, largely vacant site at Broadway and Montrose Avenue in Uptown to create a new shopping and entertainment center with more than 140 new units of affordable housing.

The plan is now headed to City Council, which must approve it.

The planned $113-million Wilson Yard redevelopment project consists of : the construction of a 180,000-square foot Target store; a 12-screen movie theater;16,000 square feet of additional retail space; a 344-space parking garage, a new Aldi grocery store; 71 units of affordable rental housing units for seniors; and 70 affordable units for families.

Under the plan, the Department of Planning and Development would sell the parcel to developers Holsten Real Estate Development Corporation and the Kenard Corporation for the appraised value of $6.6 million.

In addition, the City plans to contribute $26.4 million in Tax Increment Financing (TIF) assistance to the project. The project is expected to generate approximately $62 million in tax increment over the next 20 years.

The Wilson Yard, located at 1036 W. Montrose Ave., was originally a Chicago Transit Authority rail yard, and later home to a bus barn. The barn was destroyed by fire in 1996, and the site was left largely vacant.

The project will be done in two phases, starting in February 2005, with a completion date of March 2007.

The site includes four parcels, the largest of which is owned by the CTA. The current Aldi store along Broadway will be demolished and replaced on the northern end of the site during the first phase. The 28,000-square-foot retail building at the corner of Montrose and Broadway will also be demolished, but its decorative terra cotta facade will be saved and reapplied to the new building.

The Target store will have Broadway frontage, and will contain two stories of 90,000-square feet each. It will also have an underground parking garage with 460 spaces.

A separate public garage will be built to service the remaining uses on the site. The movie theater, to be run by Kerasotes Theaters, will be located above the Target store. With 12 screens, the theater will have at least 2,000 seats.

Housing uses along Montrose will include 71 affordable rental units for seniors with 24 parking spaces, and 70 affordable rental units for families with 70 parking spaces.

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