Tuesday, September 23, 2014

7245 N Ridge AKA "The Ridge House" Circa 2014

This house led a fairly uneventful life from 1909 up until the turn of our present century. That all changed during the irrational exuberance of the housing bubble starting in the late nineties and skyrocketing out of control in the early aughts, bursting in 2008.

7245 N Ridge (according to Redfin) began its voyage into chanciness January 2001 when it sold for 420,000 dollars. Year and a half later it changed hands for 437 k. Near the end of the real estate craze May 2007 list price was just under 730k. It delisted that October.

Yo Chicago wrote a promotional piece on the Arts and Crafts home when it was going for almost three quarters of a million dollars. At least two prairie style homes sit on the same block. One of them could be a twin.

We still haven't recovered from the aftermath of the housing bubble. Evidenced by squatters slash housing activists taking up residence in this vacant house at the western edge of Rogers Park.

Revolution and Beer first tweeted a link to its write up regarding this unusual living arrangement September 16th. Apparently Jorge Ortiz has been living there (notoriously?) for the past two years. His Curriculum Vitae was found simply by Googling the address.

Please continue reading for more pictures and words

Progress Illinois stood behind Jorge Ortiz and company who all went downtown September 18th to ask the judge to halt eviction proceedings. According to Progress Illinois these housing activists are asking the bank to "consider donating the property or selling it at a low cost to a Chicago-based community land trust".

This writer was surprised to find that this was the specific house that Revolution and Beer and Progress Illinois was referring to. There is another daycare house that much more closely resembles their description further north on Ridge near the Evanston border.

Things probably didn't go the way the activists hoped. A day after the squatters met with the judge the Chicago Light Brigade tweeted an invitation to an Anti-Eviction BYOB party. "Dance the night away with us at the community house on Ridge Ave as we raise money to help send 6 young Chicagoans to Geneva, Switzerland to present a report about Chicago Police Department human rights violations to the United Nations." Friday October 3rd the event will run from 8 pm until 2 am.

"This event is hosted by Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction and the housing defense team of the Ridge Ave. community house in Rogers Park. The Ridge house is facing eviction this fall, and is planning numerous events at the occupied/liberated home to build up local support for its defense. As people fighting eviction and foreclosure, we understand the brutality perpetuated by the police."

Its definitely not Animal House. But the "Ridge House" is definitely having a blast right now. The future may be uncertain but it sure ain't boring.

Last edited 9/23/14 11:15 pm

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