The Neighbors of Saint Boniface (NoSB) group is dedicated to preserving the Saint Boniface church structure and advocating for a development that will benefit the community by offering family-friendly, owner-occupied housing.
View of Saint Boniface Church, School and Rectory in the West Town Neighborhood of Chicago; circa 1990
The property is zoned for RS3 (single-family homes and duplex). We do not support zoning changes outside of the church structure from the existing RS3 zoning. NoSB is amenable to zoning changes within the existing church structure in order to preserve the building and keep with the family-friendly nature of the neighborhood. NoSB is also open to non-residential, community-oriented development, such as a library or music school.
We seek a family-friendly development that retains the character of the residential area around Eckhart Park and offers a variety of housing options to residents. The recent proposal presented by the current ownership would demolish the church and does not address these objectives. The community has voiced strong opposition to this plan, and NoSB has reiterated its stance to the various stakeholders (City of Chicago, Owner / Development Group, etc.). NoSB asks for a thoughtful development that does not grossly put profit margin ahead of the neighborhood and surrounding community's long-term well-being.
Proposal, FEBRUARY 2016
Saint Boniface was constructed between 1902–1904 and designed by architect Henry J. Schlacks. Eckhart park acts as the front yard to the structure which creates the a northern wall for the park. The church is defined by three soaring bell towers that can be seen for miles and provide a recognizable symbol for the surrounding neighborhood.
Starting in 1990—the year that the Archdiocese of Chicago closed the Saint Boniface parish—neighbors, community groups, and preservationists have worked together to preserve the Saint Boniface church structure. At a recent court hearing, the City of Chicago made it known that something must be done at the site very soon.