Elizabeth Byrne/Daily Senior Staffer
Albion Residential held a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday attended by members of city staff, property stakeholders and members of the Evanston community.
The controversial Sherman Avenue apartment complex was approved by City Council in November. The tower will feature 273 residential units, 6,800 square feet of commercial space and 200 parking spots.
Evanston Mayor Steve Hagerty, who attended the groundbreaking ceremony, said his family had fond memories at Tommy Nevin’s Pub and Prairie Moon, which were demolished to build the new tower. He said that even though the restaurants are gone, it allows for new memories to be made in the new building.
“Despite the rigorous debate and opinions of some people that this development is going to be bad for Evanston, that this development is going to generate incredible memories for 400 plus people that live here,” Hagerty said. “There are so many net positives that will come from this development.”
Hagerty added that the building will bring more people to the city that will engage with local shops and restaurants and help grow the “vitality of Evanston.”
Jason Koehn (Kellogg ’03), president of Albion Residential, said he’s not a fan of groundbreaking ceremonies and prefers “grand opening ceremonies,” but the development had already traveled a long way to get to the groundbreaking. He said the development involved compromise for everyone involved.
“(None) of the stakeholders during the process of zoning, nobody got exactly what they wanted and that’s what compromise is all about,” Koehn said. “We do believe that by the time we’re done that most people will see what’s going on here. The future is really what we’re talking about.”
Koehn added that he’s looking forward to Albion being a “long-term member and partner with the community.”
Andrew Yule, Albion’s vice president of development, told The Daily Albion is “excited” to begin construction and be “part of the neighborhood.” He said the building will be “multi-generational” and hopes that it will bring different people in the community together.
“Today is the beginning of a new day,” Yule said. “All of us have a lot of memories between Prairie Moon and Tommy Nevin’s but overall we’re looking forward to the delivery of this building towards the end of 2019, beginning of 2020.”
Email: [email protected]