Weekly Newsletter (Oct. 11 - Oct. 17)

After shots were fired near Bateman Elementary last month, an amazing group of parents and neighbors, along with the organizations Moms Demand Action and Israel's Gifts of Hope, came together to organize a community response. I hope you'll join us this Friday for "Peace in the Park," a march and rally that will lift up solutions to the root causes of violence and show our community's commitment to keeping each other safe. 

We'll be meeting at the Bateman school yard at Sacramento and Berteau at 6:30 PM. While the original plan was to march to Horner Park, the Chicago Parks District workers may be on strike, and the event's organizers are committed to honoring their picket lines. Therefore, the ending location will now be Christ Lutheran Church at 3253 W Wilson.

A profound thank you to all those who have been working on this event, as well as all the residents who have shared their thoughts and experiences related to neighborhood safety. If you're able, please help us spread the word to friends and neighbors about this march: building stronger community is an important step in creating safer neighborhoods. You can share this Facebook event or use the below flyer--we have some copies in our office, as well. 

In this newsletter, you'll also find:

  • A reminder that our office will be closed Monday, October 14 in recognition of Indigenous Peoples' Day
  • An invitation to a special strike info session I'm hosting with teachers from our neighborhood schools next Tuesday, October 15 at 7:30pm at Tabor Lutheran Church, 3542 W Sunnyside
  • A welcome to new neighborhood businesses including Something Sweet Donuts, Le Village Cowork, and Kepri Cafe
  • A reminder to get your tickets for this Sunday's Roosevelt Rising fundraiser!

If you have an event or resource you'd like included in upcoming letters, please send it to [email protected].

I look forward to continuing to work with all of you to improve our neighborhoods!

-Alderman Rossana Rodriguez 

Office Closed Monday

Monday is a city holiday, and our office will also be closed in recognition of Indigenous Peoples' Day. There will be celebrations and reflections happening in our community and across the city that we encourage residents to attend, including the installation of the first effigy mounds by an indigenous peoples in North America since the founding of the United States.  More info on the Serpent Mound Celebration here and the new the Northwest Portage Walking Museum here. 

Our next ward night will be Monday, October 21 from 5 - 7 p.m. 

🏢 Office hours:
Monday: 12:00 PM - 7 PM

Tues - Thurs: 10 AM - 5 PM

Friday: 9 AM - 4PM 🏢 

And as always, you can also: 

⌨️E-mail [email protected] anytime for service requests or general queries

☎️ Call us at 773-840-7880 during business hours

👍Follow us on Facebook or Twitter

👩🏽‍💻Subscribe to our newsletter: https://www.33rdward.org/subscribe

💻Check out our ward website for info on services and events: https://www.33rdward.org/

School Announcements and Events

School Strike Info Session: October 15 at 7:30pm

If they have not reached an agreement for new contracts, our teachers and school workers will go on strike October 17.

I think it is vitally important that parents and community members hear directly from our educators about their demands, so I am hosting an info session with them. I hope that you can attend and help get the word out by sharing the Facebook event. 

October 13: Don't Miss Roosevelt Rising

This Sunday is the biggest annual fundraiser for our neighborhood high school! Have you got your tickets yet? They include apps, two drinks, and access to a one-of-a-kind silent auction! More info here. 

October 14: Fall Day Camp at Albany Park Community Center

APCC is offering a day camp on Monday, October 14, when there is no school at CPS schools. The day camp will extend in the event that there is a school strike. Register here. 

October 26: Carl Von Linne Fall Fest

Finally, stay up to date on back-to-school information, events and volunteer opportunities by signing up for your school's newsletter!

Infrastructure Updates

Water main replacement and road resurfacing

On Fridays, we update this map with the most recent info we have from city departments about the state of work on different blocks in the ward. Please check it out for details on the state of construction on your block, and call us with any further questions. 

New water main work on Irving Park Road 

The Department of Water Management Crews has begun installing 4,000 feet of new 8-inch water mains on sections of W Irving Park Rd. between Keeler and California. 

Our office will share all updates we receive with residents. You can also sign up to receive updates from the water department directly by visiting http://buildinganewchicago.org/ and registering for the WaterALERT program. You will need to enter your name, e-mail address and project ID # 1501109.

Here's this week's update from the contractor managing the project:

West Irving Park Road, south side only, from North Keeler Avenue to North Kimball Avenue

Water main installation along the south side of W Irving Park Rd started on Wednesday, October 9. During working hours (7:00 AM to 3:30 PM) the eastbound traffic is restricted to one lane traffic from N. Elston Ave. to N. Kimball Ave. 

The right lane and parking lane is posted with No Parking signs and being used as a staging area for the trucks, as well as, installation of new watermain.  

Two (2) crews have begun their preliminary work. Crew # 1 started water main installation at N Kimball Ave and will continue working west along the south side of W. Irving Park Rd. No planned water shut downs. Crew #2 started water main installation at 155’ WWL of N. St. Louis Ave. and will continue working west along the south side of W Irving Park Rd.  No planned water shut downs.   

West Irving Park Road, north side only, from North Kimball Avenue to North California Avenue

Three crews are working on watermain installation between North Kimball and North Albany. During working hours (7:00 AM to 3:30 PM) the westbound traffic is restricted to one lane traffic from North Kimball Avenue to North Sacramento Avenue. 

The right lane and parking lane is posted with No Parking signs and being used as a staging area for the trucks, as well as, installation of new watermain. Water crew will open two (2) lanes of traffic on the westbound West Irving Park Road from North Sacramento Avenue to North Kimball Avenue before the end of the workday everyday.

Upcoming Brown Line Track Work and Closures

The CTA will be installing track replacements and grade crossing improvements that will entail parking and sidewalk disruptions. CTA workers will be posting notices in the areas most affected, but please review the below info and plan accordingly. 

Dates: Wednesday, October 16 to Friday, October 25

Location: Rockwell (4600N) between Leland and Eastwood near CTA’s Rockwell Brown Line station


• There will be “No Parking” on Rockwell (4600N) between W Leland Avenue and W Eastwood Avenue as well as on W Leland Avenue and W Eastwood Avenue adjacent to the western alley entrances.

• In the area of construction, the sidewalk on Rockwell Street will have phased closures throughout the construction period. 

• The east entrance to the alley on W Eastwood will be temporarily blocked. Residents can enter and exit the alley by alerting construction personnel. There may be a brief wait time to allow trucks to move. All non-resident traffic will be routed west towards N. Virginia Avenue.

• The east entrance to the alley on W Leland Avenue will be temporarily blocked. Residents can enter and exit the alley by alerting construction personnel. There may be a brief wait time to allow trucks to move. All non-resident traffic will be routed west towards N. Virginia Avenue.

• There will be noise while the work is being performed. Noise may include: • Beeping from backup alarms on construction vehicles • Construction equipment traffic • Flagging horns • Railroad personnel communication

Rockwell Street (4600N) between W Leland Avenue and W Eastwood Avenue will be closed October 18 - 21, 9pm Friday to 6am Monday.

Additionally, CTA’s Rockwell, Francisco, Kedzie and Kimball Brown Line stations will be temporarily closed Saturday, October 19 to Monday, October 21.

Garbage Pick-Up Schedule

Since Monday is a holiday, garbage service for next week will be adjusted as follows:
* If Monday is your garbage day, it will be picked up Tuesday
* If Tuesday is your garbage day, it will be picked up on Tuesday/Wednesday
* If Thursday is your garbage day, it will be picked up Thursday or Friday
* If Friday is your garbage day, it will be picked up by Friday.

Fall Vaccination and Community Fair: October 26

Our next community health event will be Saturday, October 26, from 11 AM - 3PM at Roosevelt High School. Help keep your family and community healthy by getting a flu shot!

We are also inviting community organizations to come and share information about their services and their work at this event! Please e-mail Neighborhood Services Director Veronica Tirado-Mercado, [email protected], if your organization would like a table. 

Sunday: March to Close the Concentration Camps 

This country's inhumane immigration policies directly impact many residents of our ward, and many more have expressed their desire to act in solidarity with our neighbors. On Sunday, the day before indigenous peoples' day, I invite neighbors to join me and more than a dozen organizations at a march declaring, "No One Is Illegal on Stolen Land!" Facebook event

We will be marching in solidarity with Mijente's campaign to stop Amazon from profiting from immigrant detention, as well as indigenous demands for sovereignty.


1:00 - 2:00 PM: Rally at Michigan and Congress
2:00 - 2:30 PM: March to Amazon Web Services, 227 W Montrose
2:30 - 3:00 PM: Protest Amazon's tech support for ICE detentions and deportations

Afterwards, everyone is stop by the Drake Community Garden (located directly across street from 4640 N. Drake Ave) for a "Celebrate Sanctuary" block party featuring live music, DJ sets, storytelling, games, art, local organizations, food & drink. Facebook event

Local Business News and Job Openings

New, and improved, businesses

I had a great time joining the North River Commission this week for their small business roadshow, where we visited neighborhood businesses to learn about their needs and the contributions they want to make to the community. 

I want to give a special shout-out to Something Sweet Donuts, now open at 4456 N Kedzie, as well as Le Village Cowork, and Kepri Cafe, which are coming soon!

We also visited a number of business in the neighborhood that have recently upgraded their facades with the assistance of Special Service Area 60's facade improvement program--including Charlie's Grocery, which is also home to a new mural, and Rainbow Daycare, which has been in the neighborhood for more than 25 years!

You can check out photos of all the ribbon-cuttings and facade improvements here. 

Apply to the Facade Improvement Program

Property owners and tenants within special service area 60 are eligible: check if you are within the boundaries here. 

*Download the facade application here  Or contact Alexa at North River Commission for more info: [email protected], 312-860-7884

Irving Park Early Learning Center Hiring 

IPELC is seeking for a full-time teacher for its 1-2 year old program. The position is available for full-time and is open for immediate start date. Benefits include: health insurance, paid time off, tuition reimbursement, opportunities for advancement. Learn more here: www.ipelc.com

October 24: Networking for Inclusion Professionals

More info and RSVP here. 

Educational Programs for Small Business Owners and Entrepreneurs

Did you know that the city's Business and Consumer Protection Department has free classes for those wishing to start or grow a business? Check out the schedule of classes is available here.

Some (Accidental) Neighborhood Archaeology

Avondale resident Soraya Zamora spent years as a computer and science teacher at CPS, but this week she treated us all to an unexpected history lesson. A few weeks ago, she tore down her garage and found some remnants of Chicago’s history sticking out of the dirt in her back yard: hundreds of metal signs advertising products likely dating back to the 1920s. 

Thanks to Ms. Zamora for sharing this neat bit of history with Chief of Staff Chris Poulos and Deputy Director of Neighborhood Services Lilia Escobar!

Read more about her story in the following articles:

Sun-Times: https://chicago.suntimes.com/2019/10/9/20897376/green-river-edelweis-beer-schoenhofen-advertising-signs-irving-park

Fox 32 Chicago: https://www.fox32chicago.com/news/hundreds-of-antique-signs-discovered-buried-at-chicago-home

Community Meetings and Events 

October 12 + 13: Fall Fest at North Park Nature Center

October 12: U.S. Citizenship Workshop at Irish American Heritage Center

October 12: Pop-Up Market at Avondale Coffee Club

The first of three pop-up markets with Ruckus Entrepreneurs, a teen leadership program of Concordia Place. 

October 12: Fundraiser for PAWS at Chief O'Neill's

October 14 - Nov. 2: Dia de Los Muertos Ofrenda at Albany Park Community Center

For its second year, Israel's Gifts of Hope is creating this beautiful display to to raise awareness on Chicago Violence, engage the community & our youth, and honor lost loved ones. They are partnering with  Moms Demand Action - Lincoln Square and the Albany Park Community Center.

The ofrenda will be open to the public Monday to Thursday from 6:30-8:30 pm and Saturday's from 9-4 pm, from October 14 to November 2. 

Survivor families are invited to submit a picture of your loved one with a small description of who they were. More info on the Facebook event. 

October 19: Queen of Angels Children's Resale

October 23: Senior Luncheon at Horner Park

October 26: Candy Kingdom at Tabor Lutheran Church

October 30: Fifth Anniversary Celebration for the Kedzie Center

Resources for Residents

Final Month for Mobile City Hall

Last chance this year for mobile city hall! Residents will be able to purchase City Stickers, Residential Parking Permits, Dog Licenses, and get their CityKey ID at one of many regional sites. 

Construction Career Exploration Class

Free English Classes

There are a number of free English classes in our community, including at the HANA Center and Christ Lutheran Church, 3253 W Wilson.

Office of Inspector General's Public Safety Survey

The Office of the Inspector General is still seeking input from Chicago community members regarding your concerns about policing and priorities for improvement. Your responses will help inform the inspector's work and prioritize the topics OIG’s Public Safety Section will evaluate, inspect, and review in the coming year. The survey should take approximately five minutes to complete, and participation is voluntary and anonymous. Summary statistics based on survey responses will be published in the Public Safety Section Annual Report. The community survey is also available in Spanish.

You can also always report anonymous tips to the OIG at the number below. 

Parent Meet-Up and Recovery Group at Tabor Lutheran Church, 3542 W Sunnyside

Street sweeping: Street sweeping season continues until November 1.

Avoid a ticket by signing up for alerts of upcoming street sweeping on your block: https://sweeparound.us/

You can also see street sweeping activity here: https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/depts/streets/iframe/sweeper_tracker.html




Rossana Rodriguez