West Town NIMBYs Get a New Target To Sink Their Teeth Into

Diagram of 35 South Aberdeen

There’s something about a West Loop NIMBY.  They’re not like the ones in other parts of the city.  They lack the sophistication of a Gold Coast NIMBY, the experience of a Streeterville NIMBY, and the disorganization of a South Loop NIMBY.  But what they lack in those areas they make up for in ferociousness, hyperbole, drama, and batshit foaming-at-the-mouth devotion to their cause. Speaking favorably about a new building at a public meeting requires a policeman’s helmet, a dentist’s spit shield, and a goalie’s nut cup.  Check under your car on the way out, if you know what I mean.

That’s why we cover new building proposals in the West Town neighborhood.  Even though they’re the sort of low-rise developments that would be welcomed in 48 of the city’s other wards, even a modest proposal can cause a certain very vocal group of people to go nuclear and flood the media (legacy, new, and social) with a tide of U.S.D.A. Grade A crazy.  As a public service we document the facts about these buildings for those who search for light instead of heat.

The newest proposal is 35 South Aberdeen.

It’s a four-story residential building with 50 homes and no ground floor retail space.  It’s proposed for a vacant lot about two blocks west of Mary Bartleme Park, which is a sacred space to NIMBYs.  No building dare cast a shadow on its leafy green undulations lest the NIMBYs throw it into fifth gear and go completely off the rails.  Ironically, they will use the same fierceness to defend their imagined right to have their dogs illegally run around off-leash pooping all over the same sacred grass.  Double standards are the hallmark of any group of fanatics.

Still, enough about the NIMBYs.  Here’s the firehose:

  • Name: 35 South Aberdeen
  • Also known as: Aberdeen and Monroe Place
  • Address: 19-39 South Aberdeen Street
  • Address: 1052-1054 West Monroe Street
  • Architecture firm: Space Architects+Planners
  • Architect: Jay Keller
  • Current zoning: DS-3
  • Requested zoning: DX-3
  • Floor area ratio (FAR): 1.94
  • Residences: 50
  • Maximum height: 65 feet
  • Parapet height: 55 feet, 8 inches
  • Roof height: 51 feet
  • Width: 148 feet
  • Length: 214 feet
  • Floors: 4
  • Parking spaces: 54
  • Loading dock: 1
  • Rooftop decks: out the wazoo
Location: 35 South Aberdeen Street, West Town


Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at chicagoarchitectureinfo@gmail.com.

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