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2. All maps have been updated with the new zoning classifications from the
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4. Maps will be updated monthly.
5. The print maps also have been revised with the new zoning
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Table of Contents
Letter from the Publisher
New DOB Commissioner Interview
City Department Changes
New GIS Maps
2008 Building Green Chicago Conference and other events
Summary of Municipal Code Changes
Case Law Update
2007 Zoning Ordinance
Know the Code
Happy New Year. We hope you enjoyed a happy and healthy holiday and are beginning a productive
and profitable 2008.
Our winter 2008 edition of Know the Code features a
summary of the latest changes to the Municipal Code and the Zoning maps, an interview with the new Commissioner of Buildings Richard Rodriguez, big
changes in the Department of Environment and the Department of Construction and Permits, and a highlighted court decision affecting zoning and land
The new 2008 Chicago Building Code is now available for purchase. All changes through June
13, 2007 have been incorporated. We understand many of you did not receive the snail mail notice so we have extended our pre-sale offer until February
8. Call us at 312.644.6977 to order your 2008 Code today.
We continue to improve our online data with your assistance and welcome your comments and
suggestions. Please share this e-newsletter with your colleagues. They can request their own subscription at no charge by emailing us.
Process Change to
Department of Buildings
Mayor Richard M. Daley announced in June that he was
appointing Richard Rodriguez to the post of Commissioner of the Department of Buildings [DOB]. Rodriguez had been Commissioner of the Department of
Construction and Permits [DCAP] and was asked to oversee both departments. In October 2007, the Mayor officially merged DCAP back into DOB. As
Commissioner for DOB, Rodriguez has a new set of challenges as he re-integrates DCAP back into DOB.
When asked why DCAP was broken out
from the Department of Buildings in April of 2003, Rodriguez acknowledged it was important to separate DCAP because "it allowed for better focus on
improving the permitting process alone. I think we have successfully done that and are now able to merge them back
Uniting DCAP with the Department of
Buildings will produce important efficiencies according to Rodriguez. "We have been able to merge together the talent learned in the permitting area
with the inspection side. Permitting is no longer separated from inspections. In fact, staff are being trained to be able to do both permitting and
Rodriguez was very successful in implementing performance measurements for the permitting process that have significantly
reduced the permitting time. Rodriguez now wants to take these efficiencies and adapt them to inspections. He will be asking, "how can we make the
inspectional process more efficient? When a person calls in to request an inspection, the issue is similar to the permitting process - how quickly
can we get a resource to the site to perform the inspection. And do it in such a way without sacrificing quality."
There will be
positive changes resulting from the merging of DCAP and DOB. Rodriguez does not think customers will notice any change in the permitting people or
process. "What they will notice," he believes "is that, whereas in the past there may have been a difference of opinion between the staff that
handled the permit and those performing the inspection, now with the blending of the talent, the inspectors should be well aware of what was
permitted and why it was permitted on the front end. Then the inspectors will be more knowledgeable when they get to the
Rodriguez has been a proponent of developing long-term technology solutions to improve city processes he manages. One of his
first steps as Commissioner of DOB was to equip building inspectors with handheld computers. "Using these devices, the inspectors will have access to
all the information they have access to at their desks," says Rodriguez. "They also can upload their reports quicker and we can process them quicker.
The customer gets a quicker response as to the status of that inspection."
Rodriguez does recognize the need to first analyze DOB
processes before making changes. "Much of what the department does currently is done manually and we are trying to infuse technology wherever we can
to reduce the number of steps to complete tasks without sacrificing quality on the back end."
Rodriguez and his staff have some
ambitious goals, but if his track record is an accurate indication, we should see improvements in the inspection process in short
New DOB Commissioner
Last newsletter we outlined some significant changes at key city departments, including new heads of Planning &
Development, Environment and Buildings. See the
Change continues with the re-integration of the Department of Construction and Permits into the Department of
Buildings under its new Commissioner Rich Rodriguez.
Hear why and what's in store for the future in his interview with
Check our news page for other stories covering City issues.
From our 2007 conference:.
"Rarely have I attended such a well thought out and well executed conference. I not
only gained an enormous amount of information but it is all relevant for our future . . . My thanks to all of you who put this together and are seeing
that it continues as well as grows."
- Harry Swihart, AIA, Barrington, IL
Missed the conference? Check out our supplement and additional resources handed out to attendees at this Chicago focused event.
Building Green Chicago:
Designing Green, Saving Green
April 8, 2008
As part of the City of Chicago's "going
green" week and Earth Month Celebration, Index Publishing is proud to present the 2008 Building Green Chicago Conference. Sadhu Johnston,
newly appointed Chief Environmental Officer for the City of Chicago, will again keynote this conference that will feature city experts and industry
leaders discussing the implementation of environmentally conscious design in Chicago.
Expert panels on retrofitting existing
buildings, new technologies and strategies for enhancing sustainability, a survey of existing green buildings and their performance and other
discussions make this conference a must for any forward-moving developer.
Send us an email and we’ll send
information as the program is developed. Interested in sponsoring the conference? Contact
Missed the conference? Check out our supplement and additional resources handed out to attendees at this Chicago focused
Review of the Chicago Electrical
As it has in the past, Index Publishing will host a review of the Chicago Electrical Code.
Whether you are a veteran electrician in need of a refresher or preparing for the city's supervising electrician's exam, our presenters, Dan Caddigan
and Ron Webb, will help you to better understand the code. The one-day seminar costs $310 and includes a copy of the 2008 Chicago Electrical Code. For
more information on this seminar or to register, please contact us.
Chicago Building Permit Conference
Ever struggled to get building permits approved with the City? Would you like to hear from
city officials or professionals about the most efficient way to go through the process? If you answered "yes" to any of these questions then plan on
attending the Chicago Building Permit Conference. Index Publishing, in conjunction with
the City of Chicago Department of Construction and Permits and other departments, will host this unique opportunity to review and outline the
complete building permit process. City officials and permit process professionals will walk attendees through the process one step at a time,
discussing best practices and answering questions. If you would like to streamline your permit application process, you don't want to miss this
opportunitiy. Please contact us and
we'll email you with more information as it becomes available. Interested in sponsoring this event? Let us know.
2008 Index Conferences and Events
Summary of Changes
Chicago Municipal Code text has been updated through October 31, 2007.
Chicago Zoning Maps have been updated through September 27, 2007.
The second half of 2007 saw several major changes to the
City of Chicago's Municipal Code.
Sections 2-44-111 and 2-44-112 were added, for instance, in
an effort to preserve federally assisted housing.
Several license application processes were modified in
sections 2-12-030, 4-60-025, 4-4-313, 4-5-010 and others.
Chapter 11-4 was amended in several places to place stricter
controls on pollution and nuisance abatement by property owners and developers.
Most notably, a new Planned Manufacturing District,
number fifteen for the city, was created for the Armitage corridor. The Chicago Zoning Ordinance as a whole saw many changes, as there were over 800
zoning district changes since January 1, 2007.
For a more detailed description of this year’s amendments and additions to the
Chicago Municipal Code see Recent Changes on the Index Publishing website.
"In 2007, the City instituted over 800 map changes, including 67 new planned developments, 7 new
transportation districts and 12 downtown districts."
Case Law Update
From Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, January 14, 2008 | Vol.154, Issue 009Trial court correctly granted de novo judicial review of a decision by Village of
Libertyville to deny a request for a special-use permit because the denial was a legislative act therefore not subject to review under the
Administrative Review Law.
The 2d District Appellate Court has dismissed the interlocutory appeal of a decision by Lake County Circuit
Judge Mary Seminara-Schostok.
Plaintiff Ashley Libertyville LLC applied to the Village of Libertyville for a special-use permit but the
village denied the application. The plaintiff sought de novo judicial review of the decision, invoking section 11-13-25 of the Illinois Municipal
Code. The trial court granted the request.
The village filed a motion to reconsider or, in the alternative, to have the matter certified for interlocutory
appeal. The trial court denied the motion to reconsider but certified the following questions for interlocutory appeal:
(1) Is a special use that is not adopted by a municipality subject to de novo judicial review as a legislative decision under
section 11-13-25, which states: ''Any special use … adopted by the corporate authorities of any municipality … shall be subject to de
novo judicial review as a legislative decision?''
(2) If section 11-13-25 applies to a denial of a special-use permit, does it supersede the 2d District Appellate Court's 2002
holding in Gallik v. County of Lake and preclude the court from reviewing the decision under the Administrative Review Law?
The appeals court found that neither section 11-13-25 nor the Administrative Review Code had any bearing on the case and the
village's appeal was dismissed.
The appeals court cited Hawthorne v. Village of Olympia Fields, 204 Ill.2d (2003), in support of its decision to dismiss
In Hawthorne, the issue was whether the plaintiff was required to exhaust administrative remedies before seeking judicial review of
a municipality's denial of her request for a zoning variance. The Supreme Court held that the Administrative Review Act was not applicable.
The Supreme Court explained that the plaintiff's variance was denied not by a zoning board of appeals but by the board of trustees.
By statute, when a board of trustees elects to retain the power to grant zoning variances, it may exercise that power only through the adoption of
ordinances and enacting or rejecting an ordinance is a legislative act, the appeals court said.
The Supreme Court said that the Administrative Review Act doesn't apply to the legislative acts of legislative bodies. ''Rather,
administrative review is possible 'only where the legislative body transfers to some administrative agency the authority to administer the
ordinance,' '' the appeals court said, quoting the Supreme Court.
Therefore, when zoning action is taken by the legislative body itself, as in the case of the Village of Libertyville, a civil
proceeding challenging the legislative body's action is not subject to attack on grounds that the plaintiff failed to proceed under the
Administrative Review Law, the appeals court said.
In addition, the appeals court said, though the Municipal Code doesn't require the board of trustees to act through ordinances with
regard to special uses, the Libertyville zoning code provides that the board of trustees may grant special-use permits ''by ordinance duly adopted''
by the board.
Therefore, the appeals court said, pursuant to this requirement, the board of trustees must act by ordinance with regard to
special-use permits. ''In other words, when the board of trustees denied the plaintiff's request for a special-use permit, it was declining to adopt
an ordinance. This action is legislative and therefore not subject to review under the Administrative Review Law,'' the appeals court said.
The appeals court said that de novo judicial review was required because the enactment or rejection of an ordinance is a legislative
act and that such an action is never subject to judicial review under the Administrative Review Law.
Ashley Libertyville LLC v. Village of Libertyville, No. 2-07-0729. Justice R. Peter Grometer wrote the court's opinion with Justices Jack
O'Malley and Thomas E. Callum concurring. Released Jan. 7.
See Zoning Law page for complete summary and additional cases on
New Eminent Domain Laws Protect Property Owners
To read the full summary of the Act, read the complete
To read full case law summaries, visit the Zoning Law library.