Story URL: http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/chicago/news.aspx?id=175939
Story Retrieval Date: 3/6/2015 10:03:57 AM CST
The Lincoln Square business district in the 47th Ward.
Strong record in 47th Ward aids Schulter
Incumbent Ald. Eugene Schulter has been running things since 1975 in the 47th Ward, which continues to attract new businesses and upper-middle class residents despite national economic woes.
Schulter, 63, elected at age 26 and now the fourth-most-powerful member of the Chicago City Council, faces little serious opposition as he seeks his 10th consecutive term.
With little more than potholes disrupting the peace, residents seem most interested in extending the ward’s economic successes.
Ravenswood Used Books proprietor Jim Mall said the rise in home prices has changed the ward for the better, even if it costs three times as much to rent his Lincoln Avenue storefront as it did when he moved into the space in 1999.
Over the past 10 years the area has undergone a huge transformation, Mall said.
“New people moved in, insisted on more police coverage, more city services,” he said. “As a natural consequence, things have become more upscale, more expensive.”
Melissa Flynn, executive director of the Lincoln Square Chamber of Commerce, said Schulter “has been instrumental in bringing new businesses to the neighborhood and putting Lincoln Square on the radar.”
Schulter’s clout at City Hall—he’s chairman of the council’s Committee on License and Consumer Protection and sits on seven other committees--pays dividends for business owners in his ward, Flynn said.
“He has been able to champion the cause of some of our businesses when there have been licensing or permitting issues,” she said.
Schulter faces challenges from four other candidates, including Cook County Sheriff’s adviser Tom O’Donnell.
The 47th Ward comprises portions of Lincoln Square, North Center, Lakeview and Uptown, and has become a destination for independent businesses and national chains alike.