CHA Approves Funding For Next Phase Of Lathrop Homes Redevelopment

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

Initial details and funding have been revealed for the second phase of the Lathrop Homes redevelopment situated around 2712 N Hoyne Avenue on the river. Located west of the triple intersection of N Damen Avenue, N Clybourn Avenue, and W Diversey Parkway, this extensive development has been in progress for several years under the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA), in collaboration with Related Midwest and Bickerdike Redevelopment Corp.

Map of Lathrop Homes via Google Maps

The development was formally known as the Julia C. Lathrop Homes in honor of Julia C. Lathrop, a Rockford native who served as the first woman to head a US Federal Bureau as the initial director of the Children’s Bureau. Constructed in 1938 by the Public Works Administration and leased to the CHA, the homes were initially designated as whites-only residences before integration, becoming the city’s most diverse public housing neighborhood.

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

Spanning nearly four city blocks and encompassing 35.5 acres of land, the complex comprises multiple Prairie-style buildings holding a total of 925 units. Following closure and eviction of residents around 2011 after a failed demolition attempt, the first phases of redevelopment were completed in 2019 and 2023, resulting in 488 new and renovated apartments primarily situated north of Diversey.

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

After stalled efforts and concerns voiced by neighbors regarding increased crime and graffiti within the vacant complex, CHA has unveiled plans for the next phase. This phase will involve the rehabilitation of seven existing historical structures and the demolition of three others to make way for a new fully accessible elevator building. These developments will offer 309 mixed-income units, with 200 designated for low-income families.

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

Upon completion, the project will yield a total of 797 units, albeit still over 100 units short of the original development, as certain buildings will remain vacant for future phases. The architectural firms responsible for the previous phase—JGMA, HED, and bKL Architecture—have yet to be confirmed for this phase. With an estimated cost of $205 million, the CHA has approved funding for this next phase, with construction slated to commence in 2024 and conclude by the end of 2026.

View of the completed initial phase of Lathrop Homes via BDC Network

It is noteworthy that neighboring residents have expressed concerns regarding Related’s management of its existing affordable properties.

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20 Comments on "CHA Approves Funding For Next Phase Of Lathrop Homes Redevelopment"

  1. Bravo that this development of fine architecture and landscape design is being brought back to life.

    • Truth Be Told | March 28, 2024 at 9:33 am | Reply

      More unconscious bias by J. His patronizing attitude towards POC also extends to where they live. These have always been encampments that keep generations of families impoverished but folks like him get to pat themselves on the back.

      • WTF You have no idea of what you speak, and, your biased comment is just mean spirited. There are no back pats here. Truth Not Told.

        • Truth Be Told | March 28, 2024 at 5:52 pm | Reply

          J, if you’re going to call people racist simply for criticizing the Obama center then you should expect the same when you praise a development that is notorious for trapping generations of Black tenants in poverty and squalor.

          • Not me. I’m praising the architecture ( Tod Williams and Billie Chin) and siting of the Obama center as well as the amenities. Wrong J. Don’t project your hate

            Careful bud

    • Billie Tsein, thank you spell check.

      • Try to keep up. I was pointing out how ridiculous it was for you to call somebody racist for not liking a project by doing the same to you for liking one. So slow.

  2. Hot damn, speed up the pace of these things,Chicago. The CHA incompetence of holding onto thousands of properties is one thing; these structures ALREADY EXIST!

    Get an architect, renovate and make accessible, and done. There’s a TIF major surplus. The city owns hundreds of acres. Start managing resources responsibly and just get it done.

    The progressive mindset of achieving perfection with no means to fund other than tax the rich is continuously letting the city bleed opportunity.

    Build like Austin and Minneapolis and we wouldn’t need training wheels for low income earners. This chunk of housing is severly sparse for how much land it occupies. Mixed income is great, but it’s still dependent on the city’s ability to governance. We need more social housing and less broken public housing.

  3. While its great to see this development, (and I love that Hexe), the costs of these CHA projects are always so high. $205M for 309 units = $663K per unit. On par with most expensive luxury high rise developments. All public housing in this range, and I from what I read there is a lot of complexity, regulation, red tape, funding complexity involved in these projects, but given a low income housing shortage, I’d think that there are much better options available to build affordable housing at a fraction of this price via other channels (tax incentives for developers, etc).

    • Le Courvoisier | March 28, 2024 at 9:44 am | Reply

      Tax credits are how most affordable housing gets developed today, and is partially responsible for the increase in pricing along with all of the other things you mentioned. Thanks, Reagan.

  4. Well this sucks. Guess the shootings and gangs will be coming back to this neighborhood. It was nice while it lasted. I can remember when you simply didn’t go on that stretch of Clybourn and Hamlin Park was gang infested. They should have made it market rate or just tore it down, its ugly as hell.

    • Hi 290,

      This will be a mixed-income approach similar to what was built in the northern half. Re-activating the site will actually help lower crime and reduce the amount of break-ins and graffiti on the site. These buildings are also National Historic Landmarks and affordable developments exist all across the city completely fine…

      • Facts? Who needs facts when we have feelings?!?

        Obviously, occupied buildings are more of a crime magnet than structures left to decay. Mixed-income? Do you mean housing for criminals and poors? AHHHHHHHH!!!

    • Exactly, too bad these weren’t demolished over a decade ago. This will be problematic like that stretch of public housing near Chicago/Larabee. There also aren’t enough market rents in this structure. Why pay market to live among takers that aren’t contributing to the system?

    • This comment made no sense. I walk and bike through here all the time and it’s very lovely. The intersection is aesthetically a nightmare but I’ve never felt unsafe.

    • All “feelings” aside, the facts are that this is a repeat of bad 20th century urban planning in the 21st century. Except this time it is inexcusable because the prior mistakes were sitting there already and we should have learned from those. This locks in two or more generations of racial and economic segregation in this neighborhood. Nobody needs developments like this anymore. They don’t work. Chicago needs affordable housing, but history has already told us this is not the way to do it right.

  5. What is the future of the powerhouse? Will they still build the Jeanne Gang landmark building on the river by Damen?

    • Hi! There was no mention of the powerhouse, hopefully it will be remodeled in the upcoming final phase.

  6. Mike MacCarthy | March 28, 2024 at 4:02 pm | Reply

    All of this is fine, but as a neighbor, there needs to be aome attention paid to the traffic at the Damen/Duversey/Clybourn intersection. It is already one of the worst in the city.

  7. Well, comments got real colorful fast here, didn’t they?

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