Alderman Maldonaldo Thwarts: Another Blatant Racist Attack by Developers: A Community Victory


Dickens Central Properties Inc. was attempting to rezone a building located at 3239 W Division- in the heart of the proposed Puerto Rico Town (which will be located on Division Street from Western to Kostner). The resolution called for a special use permit to establish residential use below the second floor for a proposed four-story, four dwelling unit building with a rooftop deck, front and rear balconies, trash enclosures, attached two-car garage, and two car-garage with roof deck.  As well as to reduce the minimum lot area from the required 4,000 square feet to 3,950 square feet for the proposed four-story development. This would ensure a precedent for other properties along Division Street to be transformed from residential/commercial properties to exclusively residential properties. It is obvious that Dickens Central Properties, as well as other developers, are trying to squeeze in as many residential units to ensure that “when they defeat Alderman Maldonado” they can transform these into high end condos. This zoning change would have set them on this course.  

So, it seems that it is okay for developers to determine the character of our community and for the so-called “East Humboldt Park Neighborhood Association” to embrace it.  However, the “East Humboldt Park Neighborhood Association” decides to exercise their ‘right of self determination’ in order to prevent the development of affordable housing for our marginalized Puerto Rican community, as they are currently doing to stop the Hispanic Housing development on Division and California.  Without a doubt, these gentrifiers along with Dickens Central Properties Incorporated are partners in the blatantly racist and continuous process to spatially deconcentrate our community.

Community leaders joined Alderman Roberto Maldonado in opposing this zoning change by the Zoning Board of Review scheduled for Friday June 18th, 2021.  Faced with this strong opposition now the developer withdrew their application. This is truly a community victory.  Our people collectively recall that cry from the 1960s and 1970s (as our community went up in flames caused by speculative landlords in carrying out their arson for profit campaign) WE WILL NOT BE MOVED, ¡NO NOS MOVERÁN!

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