Planning agency to review South Side Church senior housing project

City officials gave their initial backing to a plan by the Trinity United Church of Christ to build affordable housing for seniors in Pullman.

The church has 23 acres southeast of 95e Street and Cottage Grove Avenue. He has proposed two five-story buildings on the largely vacant site, an ambitious new phase in his goal of creating what he calls Imani Village.

“We are trying to create a model community” by addressing local issues which include food insecurity and lack of health care, said Patricia Eggleston, executive vice president of the development arm of Trinity. The senior housing would provide 133 units, all classified as affordable under the city ordinance. Eggleston said income standards for tenants were still being settled.

She estimated the cost of constructing the buildings at between $ 20 million and $ 23 million. Trinity, owner of the property, has partnered with SPM Properties & Development on the project and hopes to finance it with social housing tax credits.

A zoning change for the project landed on the online agenda for the Nov. 18 meeting of the Chicago Plan Commission, an agency that reviews development projects. Proposals go this far especially when there is broad agreement on the design among city planning staff, community leaders and the local alderman. A favorable vote would send the plan to city council.

Ald. Michelle Harris (8e), whose neighborhood encompasses the site, could not be reached for comment on the project.

Eggleston said she hoped work on the first senior building, containing 70 units, could begin next year, with delivery in 2023. The second building would begin soon after, she said. The plan provides for 44 parking spaces. The architecture is by Johnson & Lee from Chicago.

The Imani Village senior housing would be located at 9619-45 S. Cottage Grove. An old manufacturing building on the property would be demolished, according to the zoning request.

Elsewhere on Trinity’s property, a building leased to the Advocate Aurora Health Center will remain, Eggleston said. She said the long-term plan for the rest of the property includes housing for sale, a hotel, a vertical farm with a year-round farmers market, a recreation building and the expansion of health services. The site has a nearby subway stop and is across from Chicago State University’s Cottage Grove.

Trinity is approximately a mile and a half west of the development.

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