by Max Brantley
Our Insider this week reported the Hillcrest Neighborhood Association's opposition to the announced plans for the Park Avenue shopping center planned to replace University Mall. Too much parking lot. Not enough of early promises of mixed uses.
The item also noted that city officials were still meeting with Strode Property Group. There have been developments. Strode has made changes to the plan that reportedly have satisfied Mayor Mark Stodola. It's going to get a hurryup look at the Planning Commission today next week in hopes that it will win approval and be poised for speedy City Board approval.
The city is mindful of the work that went into a design district along University Avenue. It is also mindful of seeming inhospitable to a development in the range of $100 million, particularly in economically difficult times. My source says I'll like what I see. Not having seen it, I can't say yet that I agree.
CORRECTION: I must have misheard my report on when this will be heard because we've since checked with the planning department, which says the meeting to consider this is next week. The drawings are not in the office yet, but are expected by Fed Ex tomorrow.