Neighbors from Andersonville, Lincoln Square and Ravenswood met with Alderman Schulter, Lowenberg Architects, Magellan Development, and Mariano’s grocery chain to review plans for a new Ravenswood Station development.   Plans were voted and approved by the community on May 27.The development is the culmination of Alderman Schuler’s 20 year Greening of Ravenswood project, and is based on significant input from local community residents. It will include a grocery store, health club and five storey parking facility.

Ravenswood Station will tie in nicely with the $30 million streetscape renovation program now in progress on Lawrence Avenue, from Western Avenue east to Clark Street. The resulting pedestrian friendly streetscape will include new streets, curbs, sidewalks, lighting, benches, planters and flowers.

Kudos to Alderman Schulter, Lowenberg Architects and Magellan Development, and Mariano’s for listening to the needs and wants that neighborhood residents expressed at meetings. We appreciated the nixing of plans for a multi level condo structure, in favor of the full service grocery store and health club and parking facility.

And when the community requested additional bike parking and more green space, they responded with plans for 150 bike spaces, to be located along the tracks, instead of beneath the viaduct, along with an increase in the size of the green roof, and an addition of green space around the perimeter of the parking structure.

Kudos to the team for putting together a first class project and the financing to go ahead with this in tough economic times.

The development will also link to the new Ravenswood Train Station planned by Metra, with construction to begin in August 2010. The station will have two ADA accessible entrances at Lawrence, one on east side and one on the west side of Ravenswood, along with access via a new rider/pedestrian tunnel planned for the area of Ainslie and Ravenswood.

It is part of Metra Union Pacific’s North line $80 million project to replace bridges, trestles and walls that are over 100 years old. Construction of the platforms and station will begin on the west side of the tracks, with east side to begin in 2012. Log onto for regular updates.

Maggie Finegan, Move with Maggie Team

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