- A Chicago alderman has said he will not give his approval for a proposed 60-story, high-density, mixed-use city development, effectively killing the project, according to Curbed Chicago.
- Alderman Brendan Reilly said the project, dubbed The Carillon, would cause too much congestion in the area and suggested that project leaders Symmetry Development and the same architectural team that designed the iconic Willis (Sears) Tower, Skidmore Owings & Merrill (SOM), come up with a lower-density, single-use proposal for the site instead.
- The three-year project would have included 30,000 square feet of retail space, a 325-car parking garage, almost 250 high-end condominiums and a hotel with 216 rooms and 120 timeshare units.
Despite developers' plans to put the parking garage's entrance and exist along a rear alleyway, neighbors and city officials expressed concern about the amount of traffic and the potential for gridlock around the proposed building. Even the prospect of almost 1,400 temporary construction and permanent jobs and a significant amount of extra tax revenue could not garner enough support for the project.
Anti-high-density sentiment has managed this win in an environment of accelerated development in Chicago, but there are several other mixed-use high-rises and major residential projects either underway or scheduled to start construction soon.
A 47-story residential tower with retail space is set to break ground in the city's South Loop area, and, in September, Lendlease and partner CMK Companies started construction on the $1.5 billion Chicago Riverline, a development that will offer up 3,600 for-sale and for-rent condominiums, townhouses and apartments.
While neighborhoods often fight back against individual developments, Los Angeles activists learned a lesson at the ballot box last month when a measure that would have limited development in the city across the board suffered an overwhelming defeat. The Neighborhood Integrity Initiative would have put a two-year moratorium on the zoning changes necessary for high-density projects. Opponents of the measure pointed to the city's housing crisis and said stopping high-density construction would only exacerbate the situation.