Chicago, IL- The Stop Luxury Developments (SLD) at Weiss Hospital Campaign – will be holding a rally that brings together community members who will speak about the devastating consequences on affordable housing and community-based health care as a result of the planned luxury rentals that will be built on the Weiss Hospital parking lot. Speaking to these issues, the rally demands that Resilience, the new owners of Weiss Hospital, take the $12 million they got from Pipeline (and that Pipeline got from the sale of the parking lot) and buy back the parking lot from Lincoln Properties. The rally will take place at Clarendon and Wilson Avenues in Uptown at 1 pm on Sunday, August 21, 2022.
In 2019, Pipeline, the former owner of Weiss Hospital contracted with Lincoln Properties to convert Weiss Hospital’s parking lot into luxury rentals. Three years later, in March 2022, Pipeline sold Weiss Hospital to Michigan-based Resilience Health care. Since 2020, there has been steady opposition to this development led by a group of community organizations who have come together under the umbrella of the “Stop Luxury Developments at Weiss Hospital.” Opposition to these luxury rentals has included public testimonies offered at the Chicago Planning Commission, numerous protests at various sites, including at Lincoln Properties buildings throughout Chicago, and a petition that over 600 concerned citizens signed on in protest of this luxury development.
The proposed 12-story- 314-unit building to be built on the Weiss Hospital Parking Lot will provide only 8 affordable units. The majority of units in this development are 472 sq ft studios and 700 sq ft 1-bedroom units, which will not accommodate clearly needed family housing units in Uptown. The proposed market rents for these units are $1600 and $2200, respectively, which do not accommodate the needs of low-income families in Uptown (earning less than $20,000), 84% of whom are cost-burdened and instead serve the income group earning $75,000 and above, only 5% of whom are cost-burdened. The building would develop land that was originally zoned for medical or research work, not residential use. In short, this development would add less affordable and family housing stock to Uptown than otherwise possible and jeopardize Uptown’s healthcare and the community’s local economic future. Uptown has historically been a portal for migrants and low to moderate income communities. Today, the racial, ethnic, and income diversity of Uptown has declined significantly. For example, the household median income in Uptown in 1989 was approximately $19K and beginning in 2015, this has increased to about $55K. Among the many supporters of this SLD campaign are former residents of Uptown who have been displaced due to unaffordability of housing in the neighborhood.
For example, a former 46th ward resident said, “I lived in Uptown for nearly ten years until I was pushed out of my neighborhood by the lack of affordable housing. The apartment management company renovated the units and tripled the rent forcing myself and multiple Black and Brown families in the building to leave the premises. Many of the families had lived there for over a decade and it pained me to see that they could no longer afford to live in the place they called home.”
The rally will feature speakers including current 46th ward residents, SLD campaign members, community leaders and advocates and will include music, spoken word, and arts and crafts.
The Stop Luxury Developments at Weiss Hospital Campaign Members:
Access Living | Alliance for Community Services | Asian Americans Advancing Justice Chicago | AXIS Lab | Chicago Union for the Homeless | 46th Ward Neighbors Against Police Violence | Lakeside Area Neighbors Association (LANA) | Northside Action for Justice (NA4J) | ONE Northside | SEIU-HCII |
Uptown People’s Law Center