Zoning Schizophrenia

On Tuesday council will consider opposing an upzoning request in unincorporated Downers Grove at College Road from single family residential to R-5 high density multifamily residential, and supporting an upzoning request in incorporated Downers Grove at Fairview Avenue from single family residential to R-5a high density multifamily residential.

The difference?  The unincorporated area has already had it’s single family zoning broken by the higher density multifamily development at Maple and Elinore, and Fairview Avenue has already had it’s zoning broken by a higher density multifamily development just south of Fairview and 63rd.

Another difference? In the case of unincorporated DG, a strong majority of residents opposed the zoning change.  On Fairview Avenue, a strong majority of the residents oppose the zoning change.



2 Responses to “Zoning Schizophrenia”

  1. Cheryl Wegner Says:


    What is the process for this ruling? It goes first to the ZBA, then to the County Board for a vote, then whatever the board decides is final?

  2. markthoman Says:

    Fairview Village continues to be a Plan Commission and council matter.

    If council votes NAY on the zoning the project dies with it for now, but can be revisited when the Future Use Map is revisited. You can bet when that time comes FV will be lobbying hard for their property to be allowed a future higher zoning classification. There’s also the Comprehensive Plan. The one in effect now says single family residential, but again there will probably be lobbying by all sorts of groups for changes in many places in the village, some needed, some welcome, some superfluous.

    There is probably tremendous pressure to get the Fairview Village project approved; it appears Fairview Village payed $4.1 million for the 13 lots in question, and that’s a lot of money to be tied up in “unusable” land, and that may be the claimed hardship if push comes to shove. Did they buy all that as pure speculation or did they have some assumption and or assurances that DG would allow them to develop it as an extension of Fairview Village? If it was the former, tough luck; if it was the latter, that gets sticky quick. I don’t see the Community Development Department doing the latter.

    I am admittedly less an observer of county politics and machinations. ZBA and then full board looks like the correct sequence. As to the unincorporated county rezoning for the Trowbridge gravy train, DG really has no say over the matter, it will be decided and probably approved at a county Zoning Board of Appeals meeting over the written objections of both DG and Woodridge, and the residents who live there, and subsequently approved by the County Board.

    Past that it would take residents committed enough to file suit to block the development and challenge the zoning change. That will be a very difficult task.

    Getting the county ZBA to vote against the development is a needed first step, then the entire board will need to be contacted, informed, and persuaded to vote against the development.

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