by Heather Cherone / WTTW News / July 10, 2023
A plan to transform a Lincoln Square motel into a shelter for unhoused Chicagoans suffering from medical, mental health or substance abuse problems as part of an effort to make a pandemic-era program permanent advanced Monday.
The Chicago City Council’s Housing and Real Estate Committee unanimously endorsed the plan to spend $2.9 million to purchase the Diplomat Motel, 5230 N. Lincoln Ave., sending the proposal backed by Ald. Andre Vasquez (40th Ward) to the full City Council meeting scheduled for July 19.
Vasquez said he was hopeful that the motel would prove to be a model to stabilize Chicagoans in greatest need for help by offering them the “dignity of their own units and the dignity of their own support system.”
“This can set a model for the rest of the city,” Vasquez said, envisioning a similar shelter in each of Chicago’s 50 wards. “This is how we solve the problem, rather than putting a Band-Aid on it.”
In September, artist Sick Fischer repainted the motel’s Lincoln Avenue-facing facade as part of Vasquez’s Lincoln Avenue North Arts District initiative. Read more HERE