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05/20/94 WESTWOOD FORUM v. CITY SPRINGFIELD

May 20, 1994

WESTWOOD FORUM, INC., AN ILLINOIS NOT-FOR-PROFIT CORPORATION, THE COUNCIL OF NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS, INC., AN ILLINOIS NOT-FOR-PROFIT CORPORATION, WILLIAM E. BARROWS, WANDA J. BARROWS, PHILIP F. WINTERBAUER, AUDREY M. WINTERBAUER, MARY W. HOWARTH, D.D. PATEL, TONY CARUSO, BEA CARUSO, JEAN CIACCIO, BETTY WALDEN, JAMIE SHAWGO, WALTER A. SPEDER, JOHN J. PERKS, JR., SUE J. PERKS, STEPHEN N. TWINING, SETSUKO TWINING, HELEN MASON, PAUL G. DIXON, JR., WILLIAM M. HANNEY, JR., MICHAEL L. STRANGE, DAVID C. MEDVESEK, DONALD H. SCHLOSSER, MARY K. SCHLOSSER, ARTHUR R. BLANK, SANDRA L. BLANK, ALBERT J. SPECK, EDWARD E. POEHLMAN, SUE C. POEHLMAN, LESLIE SHUDROWITZ, KAYE SHUDROWITZ, MICHAEL LOGAN, JENNIFER LOGAN, NANCY R. WOOLLEY, TOM ACKERMAN, BERTI COOLEY, LISA KIDD, KELLY C. GRAHAM, JANICE J. DUNHAM, RONALD HUDDLESTON, PENNY HUDDLESTON, JEROME JACOBSON, WILLIAM K. LEMASTER, JOANN LEMASTER, MILES S. EVANS, JENNIFER EVANS, JOHN J. PETRILLI, BARBARA J. PETRILLI, CAROL BINGHAM, THOMAS KERINS, CAROL KERINS, DANIEL L. MILLIGAN, KENNETH SHAE, ZENA SHAE, J. KENT PATRICK AND MARLENE PATRICK, PLAINTIFFS, AND THE VILLAGE OF JEROME, AN ILLINOIS CORPORATION, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
CITY OF SPRINGFIELD, AN ILLINOIS MUNICIPAL CORPORATION, AND COMMERCIAL REALTY PARTNERS, LTD., DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES, AND FIRST NATIONAL BANK OF SPRINGFIELD, AS TRUSTEE OF TRUST NO. 1505, DEFENDANT.



Appeal from Circuit Court of Sangamon County. No. 93MR0009. Honorable Richard J. Cadagin, Judge Presiding.

As Corrected June 27, 1994. Petition for Leave to Appeal Denied October 6, 1994.

Honorable John T. McCULLOUGH, P.j., Honorable Frederick S. Green, J., Honorable Robert J. Steigmann, J.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Mccullough

PRESIDING JUSTICE McCULLOUGH delivered the opinion of the court:

Plaintiffs in this case are 56 individual property owners and two neighborhood associations who filed a declaratory judgment action against defendants, the City of Springfield, Commercial Realty Partners, Ltd., and First National Bank of Springfield, as trustee of trust No. 1505, seeking to have Ordinance No. 92-089 (Springfield, Ill., Ordinance 92-089 (1992)) declared unconstitutional. As an alternative theory of recovery, the 56 individual property owners sought damages under a theory of inverse condemnation. The Village of Jerome (Village) filed a separate declaratory judgment action against the same defendants. The circuit court dismissed the two neighborhood associations as plaintiffs for lack of standing and dismissed the inverse condemnation count of the complaint for failing to state a claim upon which relief could be granted. Summary judgment was then granted in favor of defendants and against the remaining plaintiffs on count III of the 56 individuals' second-amended complaint and the Village's second-amended complaint. We affirm.

The property which forms the basis for this declaratory judgment action consists of 93.6 acres of land located in southwest Springfield. The property is located north of the Jacksonville Branch Creek and west of Chatham Road. Brentwood subdivision, a development of single-family residences, is located to the immediate north of the property. Colony West subdivision lies to the west of the property and just beyond that subdivision is White Oaks Mall. The southern boundary of the property is the Jacksonville Branch Creek behind which is Sangamon Center, a commercial development consisting of a bank, grocery store, retail store, fast-food restaurants, and office buildings. Finally, the eastern boundary of the property consists of Chatham Road and due east of that road is the Village, containing single-family residences.

The 56 individual plaintiffs are property owners who own single-family residences in the Brentwood and Colony West Subdivisions. Westwood Forum, Inc. (Westwood), is a not-for-profit association formed to represent landowners and residents of Springfield who live in the area bounded by the Jacksonville Branch Creek on the south, Chatham Road on the east, Interlacken Drive on the west, and Brentwood Drive and Cambridge Drive on the north. Its corporate purposes include the promotion of the orderly, systematic and intelligent development of the entire area and the preservation of the quality of life in the area. The Council of Neighborhood Associations (Council) is a not-for-profit corporation whose members include approximately 18 neighborhood associations in Springfield as well as the individual members of these neighborhood associations. Its corporate purposes include the preservation, protection and enhancement of the character and quality of life in residential neighborhoods and the orderly, intelligent and systematic development of Springfield and the surrounding areas. Westwood is a member of the Council.

Prior to 1984, this property was zoned R-2, which allowed for single-family residential uses. At that time, the property was vacant. In 1984, the City of Springfield rezoned the property, retaining the R-2 classification along the north and west borders, which abut the Brentwood and Colony West subdivisions. The center portion of the property was zoned R-4(c), which permits multi-family residential uses (apartments) and community facilities such as auditoriums, libraries, museums, and radio and television stations. The southern portion of the property was zoned R-5(b), which permits nonretail and business and office uses, including medical and dental offices, laboratories, funeral homes, travel agencies, hospitals and commercial day-care centers. Following the 1984 rezoning, Montvale Retirement Estates, a large retirement center, was built in the middle of the property.

The City of Springfield adopted its Comprehensive Plan 2010 on July 2, 1991. It, as did the 1962 and 1983 versions, proposed the completion of lies Avenue through the property. Currently, Iles Avenue, an east-west street, runs through the Village and ends at Chatham Road on the eastern boundary of the property. It resumes at the western boundary of the property on the northern edge of White Oaks Mall. The Village's Comprehensive Plan, adopted in 1963, also contemplates the completion of lies Avenue.

This property is owned by First National Bank, as trustee under trust No. 1505 (owner), and Commercial Realty Partners, Inc. (Commercial Realty), is the contract purchaser. In 1992, the owner and Commercial Realty, as a joint venture, filed a petition with the City of Springfield to rezone the property with the following classifications: B-1, highway business service district; S-2, community shopping and office district; R-5(b), general residential and office district; and R-3, single-family and duplex residential district. At the same time, the owner filed a petition to vacate its existing plat of subdivision, which called for light residential, and filed a petition for preliminary approval of a new subdivision plat, calling for the area to be commercial and more intensive residential. Both petitions were filed with the Springfield-Sangamon County Regional Planning Commission (Regional Planning Commission). On July 2, 1992, the Land Subdivision Committee of the Regional Planning Commission recommended against the owner's proposed subdivision, and on July 15, 1992, the Regional Planning Commission voted unanimously to deny the proposed new plat of subdivision.

The petition filed by the joint venture was referred to the Springfield Planning and Zoning Commission (Planning and Zoning Commission). The staff of the Planning and Zoning Commission recommended denial of the petition. This recommendation was based on the facts that (1) the rezoning was a complete departure from the City of Springfield's Comprehensive Plan; (2) the rezoning would have a detrimental impact on residential areas to the west, north and east; and (3) the rezoning would cause a net increase in traffic on Chatham Road and Wabash Avenue.

A public hearing was held on July 15, 1992, before the Planning and Zoning Commission. Thereafter, it unanimously voted to recommend to the Springfield City Council (City Council) that the petition to rezone be denied. The Planning and Zoning Commission noted that the proposed rezoning was not in accordance with the Comprehensive Plan and the trend of the area was toward new single-family residential development to the west and commercial development to the south. The Planning and Zoning Commission also found the property to be suitable to the existing classification and found no evidence to support that a deviation from the Comprehensive Plan was appropriate.

On November 17, 1992, the City Council considered the plan submitted by the joint venture, which was in the form of a map of a subdivision called "Wanless' Montvale." By a vote of eight to three, the City Council adopted Ordinance No. 92-089, which modified the recommendation of the Planning and Zoning Commission. The existing R-2 classification along the northern and western boundaries of the property, which border the Brentwood and Colony West subdivisions, was retained. The central part of the property was rezoned to an R-5(b) classification and the southern and eastern portions of the property, next to the Sangamon Center and Chatham Road, were classified S-2. A limited amount of B-1 was assigned. This ordinance became effective on January 5, 1993.

On January 8, 1993, plaintiffs filed a complaint seeking a declaratory judgment asking that Ordinance No. 92-089 be held unconstitutional. In the alternative, the 56 individual plaintiffs sought damages on a theory of inverse condemnation. Subsequently, first- and second-amended complaints were filed by the 56 individual plaintiffs, Westwood and the Council, although the versions contained nearly identical allegations. The Village filed a separate second-amended complaint. Commercial Realty filed a motion for summary judgment on July 9, 1983, against all plaintiffs. In that motion, it alleged there were no genuine issues of material fact as to plaintiffs' claim that ...


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