Matanky Wins Chicago Neighborhood Development Award

Sep 4, 2015

Feb 02, 2006 - The Local Initiatives Support Corporation of Chicago (LISC) has recognized the Bethel Commercial Center, co-developed by the Matanky Realty Group, Inc. and Bethel New Life, with its prestigious Chicago Neighborhood Development Award. The award was presented in a ceremony at the 12th Annual Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards on February 2, 2006. Richard M. Daley, Mayor of the City of Chicago, was a keynote speaker for the awards; the presentation was chaired by John W. Rowe, Chairman and CEO of the Exelon Corporation.

The development, located at the northwest corner of Lake and Pulaski in Chicago’s West Garfield Park neighborhood, is considered by LISC to be a national model of a “green” — or environmentally friendly — building.

The building is also a centerpiece for the residents of its surrounding neighborhood. It is transit-oriented and has a bridge which connects it to the Lake Street “L” platform. The building opened in the fall of 2005 and boasts tenants including a Subway, Westside Coffee Express, First Bank of Oak Park, Lake & Pulaski Dry Cleaners and the State of Illinois Attorney General, bringing essential services to Chicago’s West Side. The distinguishing component of this building is its second floor and a portion of the first floor which house Bethel New Life’s job training office and day care center. These programs will enable people in the community to learn how to become an employee, and then have resources for child care and direct access to the “L” so they can commute to work, all in one building.

The center was designed by Chicago architects Doug Farr and Kevin Pierce and has achieved a Gold Certification in the US Green Building Council’s LEED Building Rating System, a high level of recognition. Environmental features of the building — from its rooftop garden and solar cells to its high efficiency HVAC unit and automatic light dimmers — create a potential energy savings of 50% compared to average commercial buildings. The building’s features have already been noted in the New York Times and in LISC’s Chicago newsletter, Working Assets.

Matanky Realty Group won a similar award in 2000 for its neighborhood work in Humboldt Park at the Chicago-Kedzie Plaza. Matanky Realty Group’s mission and focus is to bring safe, convenient, quality community and neighborhood shopping to metropolitan Chicago, and especially to underserved neighborhoods and suburbs. Matanky Realty Group emphasizes local hiring, job creation and community building.

Matanky Realty Group continues its commitment to the development of Chicago’s inner city neighborhoods, most recently through development of the retail site in the Back of the Yards neighborhood at 47th and Bishop, where construction has already begun on a community shopping center to be anchored by national tenant AJ Wright and a regional Farmer’s Best Market grocery store.

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