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Some North Lakeshore Drive bus routes could be removed from city’s expanded TOD policy

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The change was made in response to a potential development at 3660 N. Lake Shore Drive


After voting in favor of an ordinance expanding the city’s transit-oriented development (TOD) zoning policy to eight high-frequency bus corridors, 46th Ward Alderman James Cappleman says he plans to amend the measure to specifically exclude routes along Lake Shore Drive in East Lakeview.

The decision to remove the #146 and #135 buses from the plan came after “speaking with a number of residents who are concerned about potential negative impacts from this ordinance,” said Cappleman’s office in an email on Monday. The move seemed largely out of character for the alderman who, in the past, has been a proponent of transit-oriented development in the 46th Ward.

“If you look at the ordinance, there aren’t even many properties along this stretch of Lake Shore Drive that would be eligible,” Tressa Feher, Cappleman’s chief of staff, told Curbed. “This came about because of a potential development in front of the 3660 [Lake Shore Drive] building.”

The long-vacant property at Lake Shore and Waveland.
Google Street View

As one of Chicago’s last vacant lakefront parcels, the site at the corner of Lake Shore Drive and Waveland Avenue has been the center of much redevelopment speculation. Feher says that a developer is looking need to solve ingress and egress issues with the neighboring New York Condominium building before any plan will be shared with the community.

Much like the previous TOD rules, which encouraged new residential developments with reduced on-site parking near train stations, the newly adopted expansion allows lower parking minimums and awards bonus density for projects located within 1,320 feet of the designated bus routes.