New Property Finder feature: Show both types of government land at the same time

By request, one can now filter Property Finder to show property owned by the City of Chicago and property associated with the Cook County Land Bank Authority at the same time. Previously, Cityscape members could only show one or the other. 

Property Finder now also makes the distinction between property currently owned by the City of Chicago and property previously owned. 

The screenshot below also shows how the two filters have moved from "Special filters" to a new "Gov't owned land" group of filters.

Scavenger Sale Portal: Over 3,000 properties removed

Two quick updates: The Chicago Cityscape Scavenger Sale Portal now has 3,626 fewer properties, and properties are now sorted in the order they are auctioned. 

Reminder: There is no bidding on Monday, February 21, 2022, due to it being Presidents Day.

1. Of the 3,626 removed properties, 1,932 were already scheduled to be auctioned in the first week. That means that there are 1,694 properties that were going to be auctioned this week but will not. 

screenshot of the map and spreadsheet on our Portal

2. We're improving the Portal based on feedback and based on how people track properties during the auction. To help you make following the auction more efficient, we made several changes:

  • By default, only properties to be auctioned on the day you're looking at them and in the future are shown. You can filter for a specific date, or remove all date filters by changing the "Filter by bid date" dropdown menu. 
  • When you're signed in, you can view up to 5,000 properties at a time. This is enough to see an entire day's worth of scheduled properties. 
  • Properties are sorted by the order in which they will be auctioned (that is, by volume and then by PIN). Look for this sequence number in the "Day #" column. If you are looking at a view that includes multiple bid dates the day # will reset to 1 in the middle of your view. 
  • Exporting the data will also export the sequence number. This way you can print out a spreadsheet and keep it sorted properly and follow along with the auctioneer. 

Please keep sending us feedback to info@chicagocityscape! While it's too late to make any further improvements – because there are four bidding days left – we want to build a better Portal for the next Scavenger Sale in 2023.

TDL updated with new statewide logistics map

Our "TDL" (transportation, distribution, and logistics) features have received two updates. 

First, there's a new statewide map – called Illinois Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics (TDL) – of intermodal yards and distribution and fulfillment centers. You can filter this map by municipality, operator (like Aeroterm and Amazon), and type. We have three types: intermodal, distribution center, and Amazon (yes, there are so many that it gets its own type). 

screenshot of the new statewide TDL map

We are looking to expand our database of distribution centers and similar warehouses, to include ones operated by third parties like Prologis and Missner. 

Secondly, in Transportation Snapshot, we increased the loading speed to show TDL facilities within 10 miles of any address that you look up. Additionally, the data from 2018 showing the number of lifts at each intermodal yard was added. 

screenshot of a Transportation Snapshot map for a particular address

Cannabis update: Craft grower locations are on the map

Just three weeks ago, the Illinois Department of Agriculture issued licenses for over 30 craft growers. We updated our cannabis maps to show 30 licensees; some of the other licensees do not have locations and are not shown. 

Here's how to access the map of craft growers:

  • Illinois map of growing facilities (21 cultivation centers and 30 craft growers) - You can filter and sort the map by type, operator name, and city. A Cityscape Real Estate Pro membership or the Cannabis Compliance add-on is required to view all of the locations.
  • Cannabis businesses near an address - The Cannabis Compliance section of every Address Snapshot has been updated to show the locations of craft growers. The layer for growing facilities (cultivation centers & craft growers) is not shown by default, so open the map's layer chooser and enable "Growing facilities". 

What's next: We'll be adding the newly-licensed infusers (that have business locations) next week. 

Zoning Assessment updated to consider Chicago's new sports betting rules

Chicago City Council adopted new zoning standards for sports betting facilities and Chicago Cityscape has already integrated the rules. The ordinance is O2021-3243.

There are two rules we're showing: Zoning districts that permit the sports betting facilities and the distance to the nearest eligible stadium. 

Look up an Address Snapshot and the report will identify if that location's zoning district allows sports betting. Additionally, in the expanded Zoning Assessment section, click on "Find nearest stadium" and Cityscape will tell you the distance to the nearest eligible stadium. 

Eligible stadiums are Wrigley Field, Guaranteed Rate Field, Wintrust Arena, Soldier Field, and United Center. Sports betting locations must be within "five blocks" of one of these stadiums. Chicago Cityscape doesn't know the definition of "five blocks" so we show the direct line distance in feet. 

If you have a question about how to use this, or you have a suggestion for how it could be more useful to you, contact us

Both screenshots below are from an Address Snapshot's Zoning Assessment section for a location near the White Sox stadium.

screenshot showing that sports betting is a permitted use here

screenshot showing the "sports betting" section

Building Permits Browser updated with new stats & filters

Chicago Cityscape's Building Permits Browser, the map and table that shows all building permits issued in Chicago since 2006, has new filters and new statistics. 

New filters

The Quick Filters section has been updated to more readily show which filter is active, and there's a new filter for Accessory Dwelling Units (there are currently 10 ADU permits!).

By request, we added a building permit # filter, to quickly find specific permit applications.

New stats

To prepare our blog post about hotspots and trends we wanted to know how many building permits have been issued this year (so far) compared to last year. To make it easy for us and our members, we added stats to show the quantity of each building permit type issued two years ago, last year, and the current year. 

screenshot of the new year-to-year stats

This year is about 13 percent "behind" last year (so far), meaning that the number of permits issued this year needs to increase by about 13 percent to meet last year's level.

Chicago zoning map updated for October 2021

We update the Chicago zoning map frequently throughout the year. The most recent zoning changes are now in Chicago Cityscape, including all of those zoning changes passed by City Council at their October 14, 2021, meeting.

Additionally, we have updated the names of 10 new Planned Developments, to make it easier to identify and search for these special zoning areas. You can see all 1,390 PDs in Place Snapshot Explorer.

The map below shows 37 new and amended Planned Developments adopted between June and October, inclusive. The largest PD is #30, the Illinois Medical District, which was amended to change internal zoning requirements for density and minimum parking (mentioned in our latest blog post).

Cityscape boosts its APIs for tech users

Chicago Cityscape improved two of its APIs. The TOD API largely replicates the results of an Address Snapshot report, and returns details for those who want to integrate our vast database into their own dashboards and sales CRMs. The Parcels API replicates some of the features of the website's Property Finder functions, returning a trove of data about Cook County properties around a given point. 

Review our refreshed API documentation to learn how to put these new features to use.

Changes to the TOD API

We added several new data points to the TOD API response for requests about Chicago addresses and parcels:

  • The API can now return all building permits and building violations
  • The brand new ARO 2021 areas will be listed
  • Bus route corridors have been added so users can judge eligibility for the Transit-Served Location ordinance.

Changes to the Parcels API

The Parcels API has been updated to have additional filters:

  • Return only properties with a specific tax classification (review the full list of property classes)
  • Return only properties that are in one or more Chicago zoning districts
  • Users can request that each property that is returned is checked against the Chicago-owned land inventory. Then, users can use filters in their own programs to locate city-owned parcels. 

Major zoning updates for PMDs

We just launched major zoning updates to Chicago Cityscape to enable our members to find property in Planned Manufacturing Districts (PMDs), understand zoning permissions, and understand the difference between PMD subareas. 

Planned Manufacturing Districts were established in 1988. Eventually, 14 additional PMDs were created but Clybourn Corridor – the first – has since been dissolved. PMDs cannot be rezoned to other classifications but parts of them can be repealed. This steady zoning classification, and the limited variety of allowed uses, keeps land values low, making it easier for businesses that require large areas of land to afford to stick around. 

Prior to today, Chicago Cityscape provided very limited information to its members about PMDs and the properties within them, but more of our members have expressed interest in these areas. (Specifically, we have gathered feedback from CRE brokers and zoning attorneys that supported developing these updates.)

Here's a summary of what you can now do or see on Chicago Cityscape:

  • List and map all Planned Manufacturing Districts (PMDs). Then, in any PMD's Place Snapshot page you can use Property Finder to locate a property that meets your needs.
  • List and map all PMD subareas (each subarea has a different list of allowed zoning uses) - We have PMD subareas for the first time, and when you look at the Place Snapshot for a PMD subarea, there's are two handy links: one to the "parent" PMD, to show the combined boundary, and the second to the other subarea.

Request a demo of these features

Additionally, we've updated the maps for the PMDs and their subareas:

  • Updated boundaries for all PMDs that changed in the last few years (some PMDs, like Kinzie, were modified due to "modernization" of the boundaries based on changes in the real estate market; others changed because of new Planned Developments being carved out, like the new Lagunitas brewery in the Pilsen PMD)
  • Chicago Cityscape is keeping a copy of the previous boundaries for all PMDs that changed in the last few years (for the reasons described above). You'll see these labeled as "Prior to [year]". A note on that newer PMD's Place Snapshot page will indicate what changed to create the current boundary. 

New data and filters for Chicago-owned property

We make it really easy to find Chicago-owned property, and thanks to new data provided by the city, it's easier than ever to identify which department or agency is a particular property's manager. 

Browse Chicago-owned property by itself

Look up any Place Snapshot and scroll down to Chicago-owned properties. Here you can see all of the Chicago-owned property in that area and filter by status (whether it's still owned by the city) or by managing organization (housing, planning, fleet & facility management, CDOT, etc.).

Screenshot: You can now filter by "managing organization". The particular properties shown were sold via the Chicago Department of Planning & Development's Large Lots program, which sells vacant lots to neighboring property owners for $1.

Find Chicago-owned property that meets specific criteria

The second way to find Chicago-owned property is to use Property Finder in a Place Snapshot. This way you can add filters like current zoning and proximity to transit.

Once you've selected a Place Snapshot, click on the "Property Finder" button, then look for "Chicago-owned properties" in the "Special filters" list. This filter will be combined with the other filters you choose. 

Show Previous EntriesShow Previous Entries