What is New in Evanston and in Real Estate

New & Interesting Stuff about Evanston

The City of Evanston puts Federal Stimulus Funds to Work for Affordable Housing!  July 21, 2011

Evanston now recycles Latex Paints

As of November, 2008, the collection center for latex paint is the Municipal Service Center in the visitor's parking area at 2020 Asbury Avenue. This is located just south of the Evanston Civic Center. Their hours are 9 to 11 am on Tuesdays & Thursdays. If you have any questions, please call Streets & Sanitation at 847.866.2940.

Evanston sells Firewood!

Located at 2310 Oakton Street - between the Recycling Center & the Animal Shelter. Hours are 8 am to 1 pm on Saturdays. Prices are $20 per 1/8 face cord; $30 per 1/4 face cord; $50 per 1/2 face cord; and $90 per full face cord. Woodchips are also available for free. Payment by personal check is preferred, or cash - NO CREDIT CARDS. Delivery not available. For more information, call 847.866.2912.


Geothermal Energy "Green" Building Designs come to Evanston, 2006-2007 

At least three new Evanston developments will be incorporating the use of geothermal heating & cooling systems rather than a traditional heating, ventilating & air conditioning system powered by gas or electricity. The developments to use this new energy are: 1) Church Street Village, a 40-unit townhome complex by Cyrus Homes; 2) Boocoo, a community center at Church & Dodge; and 3) an 8-unit condo complex at 2500 Green Bay Road; note that this project was started & geothermal well drilled, but the project has halted due to economic issues.  These developments will burn no fossil fuels, give off no emissions and will be up to 70% more cost-effective, according to Eric Larson, vice president of Indie Energy, a renewable-energy company. Crews dig as deep as 400 feet into the earth.

For every 100 meters you go below ground, the temperature of the rock increases about 3 degrees Celsius. Or, for every 328 feet below ground, the temperature increases 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit. So, if you went about 10,000 feet below ground, the temperature of the rock would be hot enough to boil water.

 Emerald Pool Old Faithful Deep under the surface, water sometimes makes its way close to the hot rock and turns into boiling hot water, or into steam. The hot water can reach temperatures of more than 300 degrees Fahrenheit (148 degrees Celsius). This is hotter than boiling water (212 degrees F / 100 degrees C). It doesn't turn into steam because it is not in contact with the air.

When this hot water comes up through a crack in the earth, we call it a hot spring, like Emerald Pool at Yellowstone National Park pictured on the left. Or, it sometimes explodes into the air as a geyser, like Old Faithful Geyser pictured on the right.

About 10,000 years ago, Paleo-Indians used hot springs in North American for cooking. Areas around hot springs were neutral zones. Warriors of fighting tribes would bathe together in peace. Every major hot spring in the United States can be associated with Native American tribes. California hot springs, like at the Geysers in the Napa area, were important and sacred areas to tribes from that area.

In other places around the world, people used hot springs for rest and relaxation. The ancient Romans built elaborate buildings to enjoy hot baths, and the Japanese have enjoyed natural hot springs for centuries.



What's New in Real Estate?

Remember Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)? This is the insurance required by lenders when buyers do not put down at least 20% downpayment. Insurance premiums are expensive, but a new law will take some of the bite out of your wallet. Here's what happened....

President Bush has signed into law a bill making mortgage insurance premiums tax-deductible.

  • Mortgage insurance premiums will be 100% deductible for households whose adjusted gross income is $100,000 or less.
  • The law is effective for the 2007 tax year on purchase and refinance loans closed on or after Jan. 1, 2007 

Metra StationRenovation of the Main St. Metra Station
This work is now complete & Custer Avenue has re-opened.  The building is now called the Evanston Arts Depot.  This historic building has been renovated into a Renaissance theatre center (the Piccolo Theatre players), cafe, and outdoor art gallery in the Renaissance style. 

Additionally, day and night waiting room areas of the station house will be re-opened, and food & beverages served during the day; how civilized! 

The theater is called the Piccolo Theater.  Their first play, "Mr. Punch, or Jack, and the Blase Bride," ran from January 8-30th, 2005; tickets sold for just $20.  I attended, the theater is intimate, and it was very enjoyable.  So get out there and support our local artists. Call for future box office information at 847.328.2204; the exact address is 600 Main Street. The web site is

For more current information about this special renovation, click on the link below:

Recycle Your Cell Phones!  Great Idea. 

Did you know that you can recycle your old cell phone & its accessories?  Just bring them to The Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd., Mondays through Saturdays between 9 & 4, or to the Civic Center (City Hall) of Evanston, 2100 Ridge Ave. between 8:30 and 5.  They'll even issue a receipt for tax purposes.

What will happen to them?  Keep Evanston Beautiful will sell them to CollectiveGood who will turn them into cash by refurbishing them & putting them into use in developing countries, or by scrapping them for parts.  Anything to keep all this stuff out of the landfills!

ObservatoryFeeling Space-y?
On most Friday evenings, the Dearborn Observatory offers free-to-the-public views through its refracting telescope! Phone first to make a reservation & to checks times & availability, (847) 491-7650. The observatory, located at 2131 Sheridan Road, is on the Northwestern University campus off the east end of Noyes Street. Usually there are two times, like 7 & 8, or 9 &10pm. Call ahead to avoid disappointment. Kids will love it!

A Marina at South Blvd. Beach?
Guess not. The City voted it down Fall, 2004. 

But, Third Meridian has read that Mayor Daley is interested in extending Lake Shore Drive up to Evanston. Now, if that happens......who knows?

July 25, 2002 - Just read that Evanston City Council voted to support the plan to fund an Army Corps of Engineers study to develop a boat marina, most likely to be at South Blvd. Construction may be able to begin some time after 2005! A great plan. 

November, 2003 - The United States Army Corps of Engineers has begun Phase One of a possible multi-phase (at least 4 phases) project studying the feasibility of contructing a marina in Evanston.  The federal government will pay 100% of the Phase One cost of $100,000.  Phase One will be conducted through May, 2004. This study will include an evaluation of the existing Church Street Boat ramp.

April 26, 2004 - The initial Army Corps study is completed. They found sufficient interest and demand for the marina, and that it would cause little increase in traffic, congestion, or pollution. A 19-acre marina to be built south of South Blvd. by Calvary Cemetery would involve 2 acres of landfill, going 1,300 ft north to south, a 2-acre parking area extending 1,400 feet along the shore, with 20-30 foot high breakwaters 650 feet into the lake.  Mayor Morton cast the tie-breaking vote to favor continued discussion of the marina.  Next steps are a feasibility study, then engineering plans and specific construction.  Time will tell. 

Chicago Ave. BuildingSuch a pretty building...vintage balustrade & all!
Plans are to build a 12-story building on this site; I believe that plans are set to go. I do regret this canyon-ning of Chicago Ave. -- just a personal opinion. Think Paris, France! Save our views of the sky, please.

City of Evanston New Rules for Transfer Stamps
Beginning April 8, 2002, the City of Evanston will require that everyone who has any judgments or liens owed to the City will have to satisfy those debts before the City will issue transfer stamps (this is the local tax of $5/per $1,000 of sale price on your property) which are needed at real estate closings. Also, all water bills for the property must be paid in full before the City will issue transfer stamps.

Note that, in fall of 2006, the citizens voted "NO" to a new city referendum which would have raised the local tax to $6/per $1,000 of sale price. The additional money would have gone towards affordable housing. 

For you dog lovers - A dog beach
Evanston has a dog beach located at the lake & Church St. (one of the downtown streets); dog owners will be asked for proof of license & permit to enter. License is $10 and the permit is $40 for residents, these are available at the Evanston Civic Center, 2100 Ridge. The dogs & their owners love the dog beach. 

Dog Beach
What a Great Time!

Finally! New interest rates for Evanston security deposits
In the Spring, 2005 City of Evanston Highlights newsletter is an article reporting that the City of Evanston revised the interest rate that landlords must pay tenants on their security deposits. Effective with leases that start on or after January 1, 2005, the interest rate is 1.01 percent.  Prior leases must adhere to rates as follows:  January 1, 2004, the new interest rate is 0.42%; Jan. 1, 2003 to Dec. 31, 2003 of .52 percent; Oct. 19, 2002 to Dec. 31, 2002 of .83 percent; from Jan. 1, 1976 thru Sept. 20, 2002 rates are the old 5% interest rate. Going forward, the rates will adjust (what a concept!) each January 1st to echo the rate mandated in the City of Chicago. But, the rate that was in effect at the time the deposit was paid is what should be used to determine what interest rate is due.  Gosh, what will we do with all the money?

Got Graffiti? 

Did you know that the City of Evanston will help? Call the Graffiti Hotline 847.448.8021 - you may be eligible for free removal or free supplies.  If you see vandals applying graffiti, call the Police non-emergency line 847.866.5000.