Warren Avenue home saved — for now
Fresh from being sworn in for his second term as 3rd District Alderman on Tuesday, April 17, Nik Kovac told a meeting of the Brady Street Area Association that he had met with the owners of the neighborhood Walgreens store at 1400 E. Brady St. and negotiated a settlement that would spare a home set for demolition, and perhaps pave the way for the vacant structure to be rented to a tenant.
The home, at 1724 N. Warren Ave., immediately to the north of the retailer, was to be razed and replaced with a monthly surface parking lot. [See: “Brady Street Neighborhood House to be Demolished for Parking,” Third Coast Digest, March 22nd 2012]
The plan drew the ire of neighbors, who planned to protest the move before the Board of Zoning Appeals.
Kovac said the matter had reached an impasse of sorts. He had made it clear that he would not permit a surface parking lot at the address. He acknowledged that the building owners could have torn the property down out of spite, but that calmer heads prevailed. The firm will retain the building in its inventory as a rental property, he hopes.
Kovac also addressed the issue of potential future development of the Walgreens site, on the easternmost reaches of Brady Street. The 1987 development was criticized for not conforming to the highest and best standards of urban development, and was particularly faulted for its streetside parking that gave it a suburban feeling. The building is located at the heart of the most densely populated part of the state. Kovac said the owners are considering eventually redeveloping the property, possibly as a mixed-used structure.