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Lindgren v. City of Chicago

MAY 13, 1970.

FRANK E. LINDGREN, ET AL., PLAINTIFFS-APPELLEES,

v.

CITY OF CHICAGO, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. EDWARD F. HEALY, Judge, presiding. Reversed.

MR. JUSTICE DRUCKER DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT.

Defendant, City of Chicago, appeals from a judgment which declared its zoning ordinance invalid and unenforceable as applied to plaintiffs' property and which ordered defendant to issue the necessary permits for the construction of a six-unit apartment building.

In their complaint plaintiffs allege that they are the owners of two lots located on the northeast corner of 3633-35 North Narragansett. The subject property has a depth of 125 feet and a frontage of 48 feet, with a total lot area of 6,000 square feet. The property is currently zoned R2, single-family residence district. The complaint further alleges that plaintiffs have been deprived of their property without due process of law and without just compensation and that the highest and best use of the subject property is for the development of a six-unit apartment building which would comply with all of the requirements of an R4, general residence district classification.

Defendant's answer denied that the highest and best use of the subject property was for a six-unit apartment building under an R4 classification and prayed that the present R2 classification be held constitutional as it pertained to the subject property.

At trial, Frank Lindgren, one of the plaintiffs, testified that he was familiar with the area surrounding the subject property. Starting with Addison Street, one block south of the subject property, and going north on Narragansett on the east side of the street there are four stores. These stores are located in a B2-1, restricted retail district zone. Immediately next to the last store at 3617 Narragansett there is a building with two apartments, then at 3619 a building with one apartment, at 3621 a building with two apartments, and finally on the southeast corner of Narragansett and Patterson at 3625 there is a building with three apartments. The property on which these four buildings are located is zoned R2.

Directly north of the subject property, on the east side of Narragansett, there are two Georgian homes and then three single-family dwellings going up to Waveland Avenue. Beginning on the northeast corner of Waveland and Narragansett, at 3701 Narragansett, there is a single-family dwelling, 3707 is two apartments, 3711 is two apartments, 3715 is two apartments, 3721 is a single-family dwelling, and 3725 is a single-family dwelling. At 3735 Narragansett, on the northeast corner of Narragansett and Warwick, there is a Greek Church, then a single-family residence at 3739, a single-family residence with a store at 3743, at 3749 there is a two-apartment building, 3751 is a single-family dwelling, and the building at 3755 contains three apartments.

On the northeast corner of Grace and Narragansett, going north on Narragansett to Bernice, there is a single-family dwelling at 3801, two apartments at 3803, two apartments at 3807, a single-family residence at 3811, two apartments at 3813, two apartments at 3817, and a store at 3825. At 3835 and 3839 Narragansett there are six-flat apartment buildings and at 3857 Narragansett there is an eight-flat apartment building. However, these three multiple-unit buildings are located in a C1-1, restricted commercial district zone which permits the construction of dwelling units.

At Addison Street, going north, on the west side of Narragansett to Dakin Street there are two cemeteries.

On the southeast corner of Addison and Narragansett there is a nine-flat apartment building and one block further south, at Narragansett and Eddy, there is a six-flat apartment building. These buildings are located in an R4, general residence district zone.

East of the subject property on Patterson there are several properties with more than one family. The buildings at 6303, 6304, 6316, 6323, 6337 and 6343 all have two apartments each.

Mr. Lindgren further testified that he never had a conversation with any of the people living at any of the alleged multiple-dwelling apartments. He determined that these buildings were multiple dwellings by the listing of names on the polling lists and in the directory and because they had two electric meters and more than one mailbox. He never checked the building permits for any of these buildings. He did not know if any of the people living in these buildings were related.

Mr. Lindgren further testified that he and his partners purchased the subject property in October 1966 for $19,500. At that time he knew that it was zoned R2, single-family.

Ralph Burnke testified for the plaintiffs. He is a licensed real estate broker. The subject property was listed with him for sale, but he was unable to sell the property. In his opinion the value of the property under the present R2 zoning is $12,500. If the property were developed as a six-flat building the value would be $25,000. Furthermore, in his opinion, anyone who paid $19,500 in 1966 for the subject property paid too much.

John McNamara also testified for the plaintiffs. He is a real estate broker and appraiser and has been in the real estate business for 42 years. He is familiar with the subject property and the area surrounding it. Just to the north of the subject property are two Georgian single-family dwellings that had dormers built upstairs. The same was also true for several homes between Waveland and Warwick on Narragansett and on Patterson east to Mobile. At the southeast corner of Patterson and Narragansett and going south there are several single-family homes topped off with ...


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