Developers propose condos for downtown Oak Park

Developers propose condos for downtown Oak Park

District House, with 28 units, would be built at the site of the Tasty Dog fast-food restaurant

March 31, 2016

Amid an apartment-building boom that will deliver nearly 800 rental units to Oak Park in the next couple years, a pair of development firms want to build a condo project in the suburb's downtown core.

District House, with 28 units, would be built at 700 W. Lake St., the site of the Tasty Dog fast-food restaurant for almost 40 years until it closed last year.

Ranquist Development Group and Campbell Coyle Real Estate, both based in Chicago, submitted plans this month for a five-story building. The firms are waiting for Oak Park village officials, but the condos are tentatively scheduled to be delivered in late 2017, said Zev Salomon, a Ranquist principal. Village approval should come within 60 days.

All the units will be three-bedrooms, he said. They'll range in size from 1,700 to 2,000 square feet and be priced from the upper $500,000s to the mid-$800,000s. "We see these as an option for people who don’t want the big house anymore but want to stay in Oak Park," Salomon said.

Designed by Seattle-based Miller Hull and Northworks, based in Chicago, the building's architecture "has a subtle relationship to the Prairie architecture that's in Oak Park," he said.

Broad horizontal overhangs separate the floors. They’re a contemporary “green” feature, acting as shades that prevent summer's high-hanging sun from overheating the interiors but letting the lower winter sun in.

The building's name comes derives from its location within Oak Park's historic district, with both Frank Lloyd Wright- and Ernest Hemingway-related sites within a few blocks.

An 11-unit condo building is under construction at Chicago and Maple avenues in Oak Park. Prices there are $600,000 to $800,000 for units of 1,800 to 2,200 square feet.

The big boom in Oak Park is in apartments. Three developments, up to 20 stories tall, will deliver a combined 768 apartments by the end of 2018, according to the Oak Park Economic Development Corp.

Together, the condos and apartments represent "an unprecedented boom in Oak Park," said John Lynch, head of the economic development group. He said the suburb "has embraced density for our downtown, especially around our transit stations."


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