Hearing on metal shredder permit denial to be postponed

General Iron’s owner wants more time before presenting its appeal to a city administrative judge.

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A car and metal-shredding operation proposed for East 116th Street along the Calumet River is awaiting a city permit.

The owner of a car and metal-shredding operation built at East 116th Street along the Calumet River wants more time to appeal its city permit denial.

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The owner of a junked car and scrap-metal shredding facility that wants to open on the Southeast Side is asking for more time to appeal the city’s recent decision to deny an operating permit.

A city administrative hearings judge will decide Thursday whether to allow Reserve Management Group to push its appeal to next month. Both the city and the company have agreed to the postponement, according to a city spokesman. Arguments in the case were expected to be made Thursday afternoon.

Reserve Management declined to comment and the city spokesman would only say that the “agreed motion” for a delay was “in order to address certain pre-hearing issues.”

Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s administration denied the permit in February for the rebranded, relocated General Iron to open at East 116th Street along the Calumet River. Reserve Management appealed the decision asking for a hearing before a city administrative law judge.

Since the plan for General Iron’s move from its decades-long home in Lincoln Park was announced almost four years ago, the project sparked federal civil rights inquiries, protests and even a hunger strike. Opponents said the plan smacked of environmental racism as a polluting business was moved from a white, wealthy neighborhood to a working-class Latino-majority neighborhood.

An investigation by federal housing officials continues.

Reserve Management, which already built its Southeast Side facility sued the city for more than $100 million for a delay in the permit approval process, has said it will fight the city’s decision and also applied to resume operations at its former Lincoln Park site at 1909 N. Clifton Ave. That site was closed at the end of 2020 under an agreement with the city. Officials have rejected Reserve Management’s proposal to restart operations and the company is appealing that decision, too.

Brett Chase’s reporting on the environment and public health is made possible by a grant from The Chicago Community Trust.

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