Artist as Landlord

If you have ever wondered if you could afford to purchase a small building for your art studio, your home, or maybe even rent a couple of units to others, I Am Logan Square is here to help you find out!  Coming up at IALS is a new workshop on Wednesday, March 28, 2012 from 5-7PM.

Real Estate Agent, Melissa Stanley, of Niche Realty and ArtHouse Chicago will be presenting with Senior Loan Officer, Marla Barch, of Prospect Mortgage at the I Am Logan Square gallery, 2644 N. Milwaukee on March 28th from 5-7.

Please join us for networking at 5:00 with light refreshments followed by the presentation at 5:30. This will be a chance to learn about different loan programs available for purchasing multi-unit properties in Chicago. The discussion will include information about live/work options and new live/work zoning in Logan Square and the rest of the city.

Seating is limited. Though the event is free, you must RSVP to Melissa Stanley at to reserve your spot!

Please continue reading for a contribution from Melissa to get an introduction to what the workshop will discuss even further:

Melissa Stanley of ArtHouse Chicago has worked in real estate for over 10 years.  In 2010 she decided to start a division of her company, Niche Realty, that works solely on live/work space and ArtHouse Chicago was born.  In addition to helping artists and entrepreneurs find live/work space, Ms. Stanley has worked with local Aldermen, activists, and city departments to improve and create more live/work space in Chicago.

Logan Square is involved in an experiment to see if an under- utilized strip of Milwaukee Ave. can be rejuvenated by a zoning change that encourages live/work space for artists.  Alderman Colón of our 35th Ward has just rezoned most of Milwaukee Ave. between Diversey and Central Park B2-2. This zoning change allows for artist live/work space on any level including store-front. This is the largest B2-2 zoning change that we are aware of in the city, and also the first one that was initiated by the Alderman and local art activists (including myself) instead of being initiated by a building owner.

The challenge now is to develop a plan that will help property owners and artists
redevelop the neighborhood in way that is beneficial to all.  The B2 zoning change is a big part of the plan and Architect Katherine Dranstadt, of Latent Design, will be there to present some option on how to redevelop existing buildings and storefronts into live/work space. We
need local artists to attend this meeting and to be involved in the redevelopment of the
area. It would be great if Logan Square can create a model for other neighborhoods and
Aldermen to use.

In addition to the exciting changes going on in our own back yard, there is another
ordinance soon to be presented at city council that will allow any storefront in the city to
convert 30% of the floor space to live space. The ordinance being created by Alderman
Moreno and Tunney will be explained at the Creative Chicago Expo on the 24th. I will
also be involved in this panel discussion about live/work space with Alderman Moreno
and representatives of several proposed live/work developments all over the city. This
will be a great opportunity to learn more about what type of spaces are being developed
in Chicago for artists.

If you stopped by the town hall meeting, "Why Culture Matters", you heard a little about the future plan for Logan Square to develop it further as a cultural community and the live/work ordinances. Come out to the workshop to learn more!

--Melissa Stanley


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