Berwyn's Arts Blog
Monday, June 19, 2006
City Council Meeting, June 13, 2006
Cermak Road will be getting a landscaped median improvement design.
A parking and traffic report will be done by T.Y. Lin International to create more responsive parking arrangements, increase pedestrian safety and improve traffic flow.
Our City received a $100,000.00 grant from the RTA to be used to hire a consultant that will work with the BDC in preparing a Transit-Oriented Development study for the entire BNSF corridor in the City.
Mike and Sons, located at 6333 W. Ogden is receiving up to $19,500.00 in TIF funds to be utilized to pay for engineering and architecture costs associated with a redevelopment project that would allow this entity to make significant improvements to their parking lot and business.
An ordinance will be created that allows rebates of municipal taxes to all other taxing bodies within the City.
The hiring of one lateral police officer was approved. This puts an officer on the street in one month, as opposed to six months for a new police officer. A signing bonus of $2,000.00 will go to the selected officer.
There is now in place an intergovernmental agreement with the North Berwyn Park District basically letting the Park District manage Kriz Park.
The Council agreed with a legal opinion that a house that was being built on a 25 foot lot, located at 1325 Home, should not be allowed to be built.
A 3rd Ward Resident, Dave Miklos, who sits on the West Suburban Mass Transit Board, has secured grants totaling $1,357,000.00, to be disbursed as follows: $122,000.00 to complete the wrought iron fencing from Oak Park Ave. to Harlem; $800,000.00 for a complete platform improvement of the Lavergne Station; $435,000.00 to pay for all the costs incurred for the engineering and design plans for the Depot District Parking Garage. Additionally, thanks to Dave, the Harlem Avenue train station will be built much quicker than it was going to be.
There was a vote to refer and defer a decision from the Zoning Board of Appeals concerning the garage to be built at MacNeal. Since our meeting, MacNeal met with the residents and has scaled back the garage, seemingly making the residents happy.
There is now one block in all of Berwyn, the 1200 block of Wesley, that is resident only parking 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Sevilla's Tapas Restaurant is getting a loading zone for its valet parking. If you have not been there, please go. It is a great restaurant located on Cermak, just east of the Post Office, 6543 Cermak.
It is official, unless the Mayor vetoes the 5-3 approval vote, for a house to be built on a 25 lot located at 1523 Clarence. I voted against a house being built on this 25 foot lot, along with the 2nd and 4th Ward Alderpersons.
The City is attempting to put in a computerized, magnetic swipe time-keeping system, but it has not yet been voted on. It appears many of the Alderpeople are against bringing Berwyn's time-keeping system into the 21st Century. Right now, all time is kept by hand for over 500 employees.
The Building Director has proposed providing incentives to ease overcrowding and parking by giving a homeowner two incentives to deconvert their legal nonconforming residence: first, waive the deconversion permit fee and charges for inspections and second, waiving the transfer tax upon eventual sale of the property. Great idea. Simple. Let us see what happens.
The Building Director also has proposed incentives for Condo conversions: first, by again waiving the conversion permit fee and charges for inspections, and second, returning the transfer tax amount paid by the apartment building seller to the investor upon completion of the conversion. Great idea. Simple. Let us see what happens.
The Building Director also would like to add another new compliance inspector. Hopefully, the Alderpeople will go along when a vote comes up.
There has been a demolition moratorium for several years and if anyone wants to demolish, that person needs to seek approval from City Council. An ordinance is going to be drafted to this effect.
Aproval has been given to get bids for replacing the City Hall roof; tuckpointing City Hall, etc., and to seal coat and strip both City Hall parking lots.
For some reason, the plan to modify how City Hall is set up was referred to the Committee of the Whole for further discussion. The Building Director is attempting to reconfigure City Hall so people going to the Building Department do not have to start downstairs, go upstairs, and then finish downstairs.
The Finance Director will be seeking proposals from qualified firms for providing financial advisory services concerning the restructuring of City debt(bonds), to save the City(you/me/us) money.
The Public Works Department is going to be seeking bids to repair and replace the brick pavers on Ogden Avenue.
Public Works is also looking at a relatively new coating that could be applied to the streets to make them last longer. One block was tested with the coating, the 2300 block of Euclid.
That is about it.

Reminder, that the 2nd Annual 3rd Ward Picnic is being held this Saturday, June 24, 2006, at Proksa Park, the south end, from noon to three pm. Come and meet your neighbors of the 3rd Ward.

Also, on Saturday, at Cermak Plaza, is Cartopia, which is "art" cars being displayed.

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