Have a problem seeing newsletter images? Let us know the details.
And you can read this newsletter on the web instead.

Evanston RoundTable

Good Thursday morning, Evanston.

On a rainy day in Evanston, a car’s taillights dance in the moment. Richard Cahan captured this impressionistic street view yesterday, as the city recorded about an inch of rain. Today, however, is looking to be dry, with patches of morning fog clearing before 10 a.m.

What was clear Wednesday night was that the City of Evanston is moving forward on an independent economic impact study of Northwestern University’s Ryan Field project. The Economic Development Committee unanimously backed issuing a request for proposals for consulting services. The city has $150,000 in its budget to fund an impact study as well as another study gauging community support. The timeline calls for proposals to be returned April 4, with city council consideration April 24.

Look for reporter Bob Seidenberg’s full coverage on our website later today. (Update: That story is posted here.) Now, on to more news.

Mt. Pisgah plans for Fifth Ward church and affordable housing. Architectural drawings.

After three hearings, the Land Use Commission vote Wednesday was a split decision for two intertwined projects proposed for the corner of Church Street and Darrow Avenue. Commissioners rejected plans for a new church for Mt. Pisgah Ministry, yet supported the related plan for 44 units of affordable housing from Skokie-based Housing Opportunity Development Corp. City council will get the final say.

Credit: Gina Castro

Artist and curator Fran Joy (above) asked 22 Black artists from Evanston and beyond to participate in the Black History/My History exhibit at the Noyes Cultural Arts Center. “I wanted to make sure people got a chance to express what they’re feeling being Black right now as either a personal experience or some significant experience in history they want to express,” Joy said. The exhibit runs through April 10.

Credit: ETHS YouTube

Student literacy was in the spotlight at Tuesday’s joint meeting of the District 65 and 202 school boards. In District 65’s report, Assistant Superintendent Stacy Beardsley acknowledged the district’s new five-year goals use “a lower threshold” to measure college readiness in reading. Both Beardsley and District 65 Superintendent Devon Horton defended the new goals, stating that another of the goals is to increase the percent of students meeting standards on the Illinois Assessment of Readiness, which, they said, is a more rigorous standard.

COVID-19 by the numbers: 12 new cases and no new deaths were reported Tuesday, Feb. 21, the last day the city updated totals. The seven-day average is 10.29 cases per day.

More RoundTable reads

Credit: Azuree Wiitala-Holloway

Viet Nom Nom is set to close for good Friday, but owner Alan Moy (center) has his head held high. “While it’s inherently a tough experience to close your business, I can wholeheartedly share that I am more than proud & fulfilled by our journey,” Moy wrote in a Facebook announcement.

Credit: Alan K. Cubbage

For Gretchen Brauer, general manager of the Wheel & Sprocket bike shop, to fix a bike is to solve a problem. “I’ve always been a super hands-on person ever since I was small,” she said. The pandemic boosted biking’s popularity, but it also put stress on the entire bike industry.

Evanston Games and Cafe is moving to a new location later this year.
Credit: Manan Bhavnani

Evanston Games & Cafe plans to move to Church Street Plaza later this year. The new location, next to the AMC theater, will give the store more space and visibility. Owner Eli Klein is pursuing a liquor license and hopes to add a bar.

Credit: Les Jacobson

Columnist Les Jacobson reflects on encountering bullies, avian and otherwise, in his window-mounted bird feeder: “With their large stature and intimidating manners, cardinals will menace and fight off any sparrows or other birds that dare to land in the bird feeder when they are feeding. Cardinals are, in a word, bullies.”

Credit: Justin Barbin

Violet, a new musical at Northwestern University, focuses on a young woman who journeys to Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1964 to visit a televangelist. Critic Wendi Kromash praises the singing as “first-rate” but says the plot falls short. Read her review.

The League of Women Voters of Evanston and ETHS Parents Engaged are jointly hosting a District 202 candidate forum at 7 p.m. March 9 at ETHS. The forum will also be livestreamed and a recording will be posted online.

Join our team: Do you like to write? Are you curious about the varied and dynamic life of Evanston? The RoundTable seeks feature writers to cover human interest stories and produce profiles about our fair city. If you’d like to write, we’d love to hear from you! Email us at news@evanstonroundtable.com.

Become a member!

From day one, it’s been the RoundTable’s mission to bring you unbiased, in-depth reporting about the Evanston community. But we need your help to continue investing in high-quality journalism, reporting news that strengthens and enlightens our community, encourages civic engagement and bolsters our democracy. Please join our community of readers and become a member today.

Around the web

Regional mass transit needs more public investment, RTA chief says. With the Regional Transportation Authority facing a potential $730 million shortage by 2025, Chairman Kirk Dillard is calling for more public funding.

A Skokie artist hopped a plane to help quake victims in Syria and Turkey. Syed Rahman flew to Turkey the morning after the Feb. 6 earthquakes to offer aid.

Chicago groups to scramble to find housing for newly arrived immigrants 6 months after busing began. As immigrants bused from Texas continue to seek shelter in Chicago, officials and groups are wrestling with a shortage of beds.

Like what you’re reading? Share it!

If you appreciate the RoundTable newsletter, please forward it to friends and suggest that they sign up!

Avatar photo

Manan Bhavnani

Prior to joining the RoundTable, Manan Bhavnani covered business and technology for the International Business Times, with a focus on mergers, earnings and governance. He is a double Medill graduate, with...