ALTON - An Alton alderwoman has raised questions about permits issued recently to a new housing development in the city - Sunnybrook - and Mayor David Goins’ office responded that he has no direct input or role in the issuance of building permits. He said those decisions are done in the Building & Zoning Division. Both Mayor Goins and Alderwoman Carolyn McAfee have comments about the permits below.
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This is Goins’ statement as it applies to the proposed Sunnybrook development and all other developments which are subject to Building & Zoning review:
“The Fifth District Appellate Court of Illinois ruled in April of 2021 that the City of Alton was previously within its right to deny the building permit for the proposed Sunnybrook development. The court found that the prospective developer had not exhausted its administrative remedies and failed to submit the required fire suppression plans to the City of Alton for review. Subsequent to the court’s decision, the developer submitted revised building plans including the aforementioned fire suppression plans to the Building & Zoning Division for review and approval.
“Upon administrative review, the plans were deemed to be in compliance with all applicable codes and regulations of the City of the Alton. The City of Alton had no legal basis to deny the issuance of a building permit for the proposed Sunnybrook development. Any questions relating to the project’s schedule, financing, tenant selection, and all other inquiries should be directed to the prospective developer. "
Alderwoman Carolyn McAfee said that she learned of information about Sunnybrook permits issued by the city’s building and zoning officials for the Sunnybrook housing project on Washington Avenue in Alton after she filed a Freedom of Information Request.
McAfee made the following statement about the Sunnybrook building permits: “It’s frustrating to be uninformed about a project that received so much attention. I feel the mayor is supposed to tell us things like this; we only found out through another alderman and a conversation. The mayor is supposed to be transparent, and I don’t feel like they should have given them the permit. I guess it will move forward now. There were a couple of aldermen who know it was issued who are pretty upset about it. We think it should have gone back for a vote to the planning commission and then back into city council.”