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A plan to convert the Lawrence-Kedzie Self Storage building, 3215 W. Lawrence Ave., into an apartment and retail complex raises questions of whether rents will be affordable for neighborhood residents. | Photo by Patty Wetli for the Sun-Times

New apartments planned in Albany Park, but will they be affordable?

SHARE New apartments planned in Albany Park, but will they be affordable?
SHARE New apartments planned in Albany Park, but will they be affordable?

Albany Park residents will get their first look Wednesday night at a proposal to convert the Lawrence-Kedzie Self Storage building, 3215 W. Lawrence Ave., into 27 apartments and ground-floor retail.

The developer and architects will present information on the building’s design, mix of units and potential commercial tenants at a community forum hosted by Ald. Deborah Mell (33rd), 6:30-8 p.m. at Hibbard Elementary, 3244 W. Ainslie St.

Questions regarding anticipated rents are likely to be raised at the meeting.

Though Albany Park has historically served as a gateway for immigrants, in recent years, rising rents and gentrification have become a growing concern, with the neighborhood becoming less and less affordable for lower income and working-class families.

“I think it would be a big loss for the city for Albany Park to go the way of Wicker Park,” Mell said in a 2017 interview.

In advance of the meeting, Mell’s chief of staff, Jason Hernandez, has stated that 15 percent of the units will be affordable.

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