About James Smith

Posts by James Smith:

McMobil project represents progress

To the Editor: As a resident, property owner and business owner in Hyde Park for more than 15 years, I support the proposed 14-story development (i.e., mixed-used development) on the Mobil gas station site. Clearly, I understand the trade-offs associated with aesthetic appeal and return on investment. However, economic development in Hyde Park is far(…)

McMobil building is a bad idea

To the Editor: I have been a resident of Hyde Park/Kenwood for 50 years, and I have seen many changes both good and bad. The proposal for the McMobil development is one of the worst. The developers say that by not providing enough parking they will encourage residents of the apartment building to “walk or(…)

Theories on McMobil project are all wrong

To the Editor: It has been interesting, and somewhat disheartening, to read and hear the resistance to the proposed redevelopment on the McMobil site. To be clear, I am in full support of what has been proposed. I thank and applaud Ald. Will Burns for giving his support for this transformative project, especially in the(…)

McMobil foes are not persuasive

To the Editor: There may be a persuasive case to be made against the 53rd Street/McMobil site development proposed by Mesa Development in partnership with the University of Chicago (from whom I draw a paycheck). The flyer distributed last month by neighbors organizing against the plan, however, doesn’t make it. Among the claims and implications(…)

For the record, Canter is not an underperforming school

To the Editor: Through reckless school closings set on a fabricated chaos-creating timetable, Mayor Emanuel and his appointed school board have managed to distract us from one important detail about our neighborhood middle school: Canter is not an underperforming school. On the contrary, Canter has outperformed the CPS district average by nine to 19 percentage(…)

Review: “The Pianist of Willesden Lane”

RECOMMENDED Where: The Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted St. When: through May 25 Tickets: $45-$49 Phone: 312-988-9000 Hershey Felder has carved out a niche and gained a loyal local following with his dramatized musical biographies of famous composers ranging from Beethoven to Bernstein. Now he’s taking his passion for music and its power to(…)

Review: “Still Alice”

RECOMMENDED Where: Lookingglass Theatre Company, Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan Ave. When: through May 19 Tickets: $36-$70 Phone: 312-337-0665 By ANNE SPISELMAN Theater Critic If you think a play about a woman with early onset Alzheimer’s disease is going to be sad and depressing, you’d be right. But Lookingglass Theatre Company’s “Still Alice”(…)

Review: Murky Maria in a tango tangle

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic The general director of Chicago Opera Theater (COT), Andreas Mitisek, isn’t shy about his role in the recent production of “Maria de Buenos Aires.” He’s credited in the program as “conductor, director, concept, video concept and production designer.” You’d think with a single mind behind so many of the(…)