Evanston – it's the bizarro-world version of Oak Park.
Similar in population – spoiler alert: Evanston's a little bigger – and in demographics – both municipalities being made up of the affluent kind – the tongue-in-cheek rivalry is occasionally mentioned at Oak Park Board of Trustees meetings.
"Whatever Evanston does, Oak Park can do it better" is the mantra.
Now, like Oak Park, Evanston has its own proposed high-rise project by Albion Residential.
Curbed Chicago, a real estate news blog, reports that Albion, which has proposed a controversial an 18-story apartment building in downtown Oak Park, has recently pitched a 16-story tower in Evanston.
A rendering of the building published by Curbed Chicago shows a wavy looking structure that runs nearly a full city block – 1454 to 1508 Sherman Ave.
The online news publication Evanston Now reported on April 7 that the project would include 298 dwelling units and 192 parking spaces and – like in Oak Park – would need zoning variances from the municipality for approval.
Also like in Oak Park, some local residents believe the building is too tall, according to Evanston Now. The publication quotes Evanston's 4th Ward Ald. Don Wilson saying that he has the sense the building is too big for the site.
The comments section of the Evanston Now article also has locals there worried about wind, height and density. Others welcome the project, though, arguing that the existing retail spaces are struggling.
Some support greater density in the transit-oriented area of Evanston. Time will tell as the project moves through Evanston government's zoning process. Albion is expected to unveil its formal proposal for its Oak Park project, on the northwest corner of Lake and Forest, in the coming weeks. It will be forwarded to the Oak Park Plan Commission for review.
And by the way, just in case Evanston didn't notice, our Albion proposal is bigger than yours.