A proposed 240-unit apartment development near Lake Cook Road and the Tri-State Tollway in Deerfield may be intended for young professionals, but developer AMLI Companies sees a variety of people occupying the building when done.
The project got its first vote of approval from the Deerfield Village Board of Trustees Monday though AMLI has some tweaking to do before it gets the final nod. Most of the changes involve car and pedestrian traffic patterns.
Earlier: Village Questions Developer of 240 Apartments
Though the primary focus of the project will be catering to what AMLI Executive Vice President Stephen Ross describes as “young urban professionals,” he sees an appeal to empty nesters and seniors.
“This is a good location for an urban luxury community,” Ross said to the Trustees and Mayor Harriet Rosenthal at their meeting Monday. “This type of product is not currently in Deerfield. It will freshen up an area that needs freshening up.”
The project is located at 1525 Lake Cook Road in the Cook County portion of Deerfield near Wilmot Road. It will be a joint venture with the Jewish Federal of Metropolitan Chicago which operates the Weinberg Community for Senior Living nearby at 1551 Lake Cook Road.
The partnership between AMLI and Federation is one of the reasons Ross believes seniors and empty nesters will join the younger crowd in the studio, one and two-bedroom apartments ranging in price from $1,250 to $2,450 per month.
“I’ve talked to the people at Weinberg and we expect some (of our residents) will want to take advantage of their programs,” Ross said. “The primary focus is for work force professionals but we expect multigenerational housing. We think empty nesters and seniors are prepared to rent.”
Development Could Bring Affordable Housing
Another potential side benefit of the project is affordable housing though no one called it that. “It’s not affordable housing, but work force housing that is affordable,” Ross said. Some of those workers could be Deerfield’s public servants.
“Teachers who teach in Deerfield and police officers who work here could afford these apartments and we appreciate that,” Rosenthal said.
A number of Trustees expressed concerns with traffic backups for people exiting the project onto Lake Cook or Wilmot Roads. They also worry about the safety of people who might want to walk to work at Walgreens corporate headquarters, a few hundred yards across Lake Cook Road on Wilmot Road.
“There is no pedestrian signal, no crosswalk,” Trustee Robert Benton said. “That could be a deal breaker. For a pedestrian crossing they have to go to where the bicycle area is.”
AMLI Says Project is Bicycle and Pedestrian Friendly
Ross and one of AMLI’s several consultants who made presentations at the meeting indicated the access would be sufficient for people who work at Walgreens and other large business complexes in the area like Baxter and Takeda.
“The young professional who is working in the area will (have no concern) crossing Wilmot,” Ross said. “This is not an obstacle to a young biker.” Walgreens and the Deerfield Bannockburn Riverwoods Chamber of Commerce have expressed support for the proposal.
Nevertheless, Rosenthal made it clear to Ross and the rest of his AMLI team she and the Trustees expected solutions to their worries when the company returns May 6 for the next step in the approval process.
“When you come back to us in two weeks, we expect you will address some of these concerns,” Rosenthal said. She made it clear after the meeting solutions to the Board’s issues will be written into the final ordinance.