City Council discussions on Margarita Inn delayed due to court ruling


Daily file photo by Angeli Mittal

Margarita Inn has operated as a fixed-site homeless shelter since March 2021.

Aviva Bechky, City Editor

Neither the Planning & Development Committee nor City Council will hear discussions Monday on a special use permit for Margarita Inn, contrary to initial agendas.

Cook County At-Large Judge Neil Cohen granted a temporary restraining order that paused City Council discussion on the application. Instead of voting on the application at Monday’s meeting, Cameel Halim — who owns ​​the Halim Time & Glass Museum next to the Inn — must be allowed to provide comment at an upcoming Land Use Commission meeting before the city can move forward.

After this discussion and another round of voting within the committee, the permit can return to a hearing and vote from City Council, according to a Friday press release from Connections for the Homeless.

A shelter for houseless individuals in the 4th Ward, Margarita Inn is currently operated by Connections.

“Resilience is a core value of this agency and we strive to embody that value in everything we do,” Connections wrote in its press release. “We are confident that we will cross the finish line and ultimately the much-needed services we provide at the Margarita Inn will become a permanent solution.”

[Read more about the community debate around Margarita Inn here.]

Due to a city zoning decision last March, Connections began the process of submitting an application for a Special Use Permit, which would allow the Inn to continue operating. In November, the group received a recommendation from the Land Use Commission, which was sent to City Council for review. 

Now, Connections said in its press release that the group is not sure when Margarita Inn will return to the City Council agenda. 

A city-wide proposal to update requirements for lodging establishment licenses, however, remains on the agenda for the Monday council meeting.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @avivabechky

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