When MAT Asphalt wanted to set up in McKinley Park, they did not have to get their property re-zoned. That’s because we’re part of the old Central Manufacturing District, which explicitly allows for heavy industry.
However, an adjacent property, “Residential Planned Development No. 934” (PD 934) was zoned residential. This posed a potential problem for MAT Asphalt, because the asphalt plant could not be located “within 300 feet of any [residential] district.” To prevent this problem, MAT Asphalt successfully sought to have the adjacent property rezoned as C1-3 Commercial.
How do we know this? Because on April 24, 2017 Daley & Georges, the lawyers representing MAT Asphalt, wrote to the city zoning administrator.
The letter contains several important details:
- It explicitly states that PD 934 was rezoned “to remove that possible impediment” to the asphalt plant.
- It wrongly lists the address of the plant as “4010 S Damen Ave” when in fact the plant is located at 2055 W Pershing Ave (see our related post, “Where exactly is MAT Asphalt?”)
- It further states that “With the rezoning of the former PMD 934, the proposed asphalt plant is over a mile away from the nearest residential district.” While that may be true of 4010 S Damen, that is not true of the plant in its actual location.
- It specifically says the rezoning happened “with the support of Alderman Cardenas”. This matters, because it indicates that Ald. Cardenas was aware of the plan to build MAT Asphalt more than a year before the residents of his ward, and he did not share this information.
The listed applicant seeking the rezoning was President Park, LLC, represented by Daley & Georges. President Park donated $17,500 to Friends of George Cardenas between August of 2017 and now – the only donations that company has made in Illinois. Joey Panfil, who is listed as the owner of President Park LLC on the zoning application, donated $5,000 to Friends of George Cardenas twice – first in September of 2016 before PD 934 was rezoned, and again on April 24th, 2017 shortly afterward.