Alderman behind anti-gentrification ordinance lists home near Trail 606 for $2.4 million
HUMBOLDT PARK — A Humboldt Park councilman who pushed policies to combat gentrification along the Bloomingdale Trail at 606 has put his home adjacent to the trail on the market for nearly $2.4 million.
Aldus. Roberto Maldonado (26th) listed his 6,400 square foot six-bedroom home in the 1700 block of North Troy Street this week. It sits near a trailhead and spans three city lots, according to a real estate listing. It includes a grand staircase with a large chandelier, a theater room, and a two-and-a-half-car garage.
Maldonado built the house in 2009 before the Bloomingdale Trail was built, but now he’s taking advantage of the popular walking and biking trail – for the second time. Alderman flipped four properties along the trail in 2015, pocketing $300,000.
The veteran alderman has long championed policies aimed at slowing gentrification along 606’s Bloomingdale’s Trail. fees to developers who tear down natural affordable housing along the trail.
The ordinance aims to prevent the construction of large single-family homes and preserve existing two- and four-unit apartment buildings in an effort to keep Latino residents in their homes.
“It’s a moral question,” Maldonado said at a city hearing last March. “…The goal behind all of this, we hope, is to stop gentrification, stop development and stop moving around.”
Reached by phone, Maldonado told the Block Club Chicago he was selling his house to help fund his children’s education, including that of his eldest son, who is heading to medical school.
“The market is good. I want to take this opportunity to be able to help my children,” he said.
The alderman said it was also an attempt to downsize. His wife, Nancy, died of cancer six years ago and his children are growing up, he said.
“We don’t need 6,400 square feet for three of us. We will be more than happy to live in a nice house half the size,” Maldonado said.
Maldonado says he’s running for re-election
In recent months, rumors have swirled that Maldonado has no intention of running for office next year.
But in an interview with Block Club, Maldonado said he was running, crushing the rumours.
“In this age of fake news and misinformation, how can you be surprised by comments and made-up stories like these?” He asked.
Before working in government, Maldonado worked as a psychologist in Chicago public schools and started a mortgage banking company. He served as Cook County Commissioner of the 8th District for 15 years before then-Mayor Richard M. Daley appointed him alderman for the 26th District in 2009.
Maldonado said he was running for re-election in large part because he was passionate about bringing more affordable housing to gentrified Humboldt Park. Under his tenure, the neighborhood gained 410 affordable housing units, close to its goal of 485 units, he said.
Maldonado said he was also “making sure future borders [of the 26th Ward] really reflect our culture, that it will be a Latino neighborhood. The Humboldt Park alderman is an active member of the Latino Caucus, which is fighting for more representation under Chicago’s new neighborhood map.
Maldonado hasn’t purchased a new home in the neighborhood, but plans to do so soon, he said.
“We have been planning this for months. I search the room,” Maldonado said. “I’m going to live in the neighborhood…because I’m running for re-election.