Cabrini Rowhouses Update

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The Chicago Housing Authority said last month they have not made a final decision about the fate of 300 public housing row houses at the Cabrini Green public housing complex.

A police patrol car strolls past many vacant row-houses, located on Cambridge Street, at the Cabrini-Green public housing complex in June 2010. The row-houses were still awaiting the Chicago Housing Authority's decision to continue to rehabilitate them or not. Photo by Mary C. Johns

“There currently aren’t any definite plans for the remaining, non-rehabbed row houses. At this time, there is a working group in place to analyze and make a recommendation on the future of the remaining row houses,” states an e-mail from CHA spokesperson Matt Aguillar.

In December, Robert Whitfield, attorney for the elected leadership of public housing tenants, the Central Advisory Council, cited CHA documents which indicate the agency is planning to spend millions of dollars on redevelopment activities at the site of the Cabrini Rowhouses instead of rehabilitating all of them. The federal government approved an early plan from CHA to rehab the 300, low-rise, townhome-style units in April 2008.

The CAC requested a meeting with the CHA, officials from Business and Professional Persons in the Public Interest, a non-profit group with a legal role in the process, and the Cabrini Green Local Advisory Council to discuss the future of the row houses and the proposed activity for FY 2011.

The CHA did not directly answer a query from Residents’ Journal about whether a specific meeting would take place on the fate of the row houses, stating only, “The CHA has ongoing discussions with the CAC, LAC and other groups.”

CHA also told RJ in the emailed statement that the majority of the Cabrini Green families relocated from the last high rise building at 1230 N. Burling had moved to units in CHA’s mixed income sites, to the Cabrini row houses, and at other rehabbed public housing complexes, such as Dearborn Homes and Wentworth Gardens.

“Many” moved to private apartments using Housing Choice Vouchers, CHA added.

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