Lincolnwood 'Quietly' OKs Firing Range, Gun Shop

Only one person attended Lincolnwood's Planning Commission meeting last week. Officials changed zoning laws so a 30,000-square-foot gun shop and 16-lane-firing range could be closer to schools, parks and a planned bike path.

A 16-lane firing range could be coming to Lincolnwood within a few blocks of several District 74 schools.

The village's Planning Commission recently cleared the way for the 30,000 square foot gun shop and 16-lane firing range. In the past, the village has not allowed such businesses to locate within half-a-mile of any school, park or residence. (See map above by clicking the PDF image)

If built, the gun shop would be in close proximity to three parks; Drake Park, Columbia Park and O'Brien Park. One Lincolnwood business owner has already started a petition to stop the gun shop from coming to town.

"They're quietly doing some major zoning changes to let these guys in," said Lincolnwood business owner Mike Shapiro. "[The new laws] were passed at a planning commission meeting and I was the only one there."

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The proposed site for the new gun shop would be next door to Shapiro's business, Ravens Wood Studio, in the 6900 block of N. Central Park. Besides the gun shop being within 800 feet of several schools (Rutledge Hall, Todd Hall and Lincoln Hall), Shapiro is concerned about the parking and proximity to Lincolnwood's bike path. In the latter, the bike route runs directly adjacent to the proposed site.

A business the size of the proposed gun shop needs to have at least 74 parking spaces according to Lincolnwood village code, but the planning commission made another exception and changed the requirement to zero. That means parking used by existing business owners such as Shapiro will have to satisfy the parking needs of the gun shop.

"The village is just allowing them an awful lot for this one business to come in," Shapiro said. "The parking will hurt the other businesses. The noise potential could drive me out ... The Village Board instructed the plan commission to make this work. If nobody speaks up I think this will get passed."

The Village Board is set to vote on the measure on July 17. The next Village Board meeting is this Tuesday, June 19 at 7:30 p.m.

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Elena February 27, 2013 at 02:56 AM
Will you complain when it is next to your home with bullets flying as you mention?
Elena February 27, 2013 at 02:57 AM
Skokie Mike, I agree with you. Let's think on how we can make money and forget about the residents or the quality of life for the residents.
Elena February 27, 2013 at 03:23 AM
Unreal to read your comment Z. How about if you take a few minutes to read the Supreme Court decision with Justice Sotomayor's statement. Read Bongani Calhoun. It is amazing that anyone would make such a comment on 2013. Let's see, the CT school massacre was committed by a caucasian male from a very wealthy income. He had the $. What about the one at the theater in CO? He certainly could afford to buy an arsenal. Thus, so long as it is not a strip club with alcohol and debauchery, or a casino with cheap liquor and I guess people who can't afford to live in Lincolnwood, it would be okay with you? Wow!
Elena February 27, 2013 at 03:36 AM
I agree to some degree. If you look at the candidates running trying to replace Mayor Turry, they go from one post to another. Moy is running again for Mayor and if he wins, we will see his picture everywhere again. Nice, what about services? Turry is very sensitive to the needs of Lincolnwood. The only way to bring change is to get involved and begin to question who is appointed to the various boards/ commissions and who is recommending them and what is going on at each of the boards and at each of the departments. Just try asking questions. My experience is that Lincolnwood staff is used to saying whatever and residents take it quietly. Are you then surprised with what is happening?
Elena February 27, 2013 at 04:37 AM
Walter, you sound like a great American - open minded, sensitive and inclusive. I'm impressed. It is the liberal nut cases that you refer to who are trying to live in a safe society. I find your comments offensive and abusive of people that I assume you do not know. I do not know any of the people who have expressed their opinion for and against. I am not liberal or conservative, but practical and realistic and NO, I will not move to another country. In my opinion, we have way too many guns and violence in this country. I do not want a gun range next door to my home and I know that it would be those wealthy individuals who like to have an arsenal in their homes. However, you could move next door to one if you so choose.


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