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West Village Neighbors to Discuss Police Outpost

Residents plan to discuss the issue at the city council meeting Monday and again at a community meeting later in the week.

Community activists in the plan to speak out this week about a proposed new police outpost, which would be stationed inside the in the Dempster Plaza strip mall.

The Dewey-Darrow and Florence-Crain Neighbors will meet Thursday at Perla Cafe to discuss local issues, including the police outpost.

(Read earlier: Residents first discuss pros and cons of the outpost.)

Residents also plan on to asking city council Monday to hold public hearings on the issue and refrain from moving forward on the plan until they have received community input.

"[Putting the outpost in Dominick's] is an unprecedented action- there is no store in Evanston and not one Dominck's in the entire country which have police stationed within their store," wrote Dickelle Fonda, a community organizer in the area, in an alert to neighbors.

Neighbors met last month to first discuss the outpost, which some residents welcome and others see as a bad message about the nature of the area.

"It creates a perception of fear,” said Nancy Floy, owner and executive director of the Heartwood center, at the meeting in June. “That this is not a safe neighborhood to come into. And that is what we are working so hard to do. To change the perception here. To say, ‘this is the West Village. This is a hip cool community. Come bring your kids down.’”

The outpost was proposed in response to crime at the store, including several reported incidents of store employees being robbed or in or near Evanston Plaza.

The community meeting on Thursday will begin at 7 p.m.

John C Thomson July 25, 2011 at 03:03 PM
When I first came to Evanston 33 years ago I was attending a meeting at the Unitarian Church, an organization that helped ex-convicts was addressing a mostly elderly crowd. A woman stood up and asked a question, I would like to re-phrase her question as it applies to this particular discussion. I don't live in West Village, I don't know anyone in West Village, and I don't go in West Village why should I care what goes on in West Village. Ok, yes, I'm playing devil's advocate for the sake of discussion but my more pertinent point is this, once you start designating areas of Evanston as a particular area with particular situations, people have as much reason to drop out of the conversation because it doesn't affect them as it does those who it does affect.
Charlene Bos July 25, 2011 at 03:48 PM
As a long time resident of the 1000 block of Florence in the City of Evanston I am strongly requesting that the Patch does not refer to the neighborhood as West Village. That is the name of a business group that is only a small portion of businesses in the area and none of the residential inhabitants. In previous Patch comments and emails to members of that group I have asked where the democratic process was when choosing to "rebrand"the area. The response was it was only a business group and not the neighborhood. That the Patch is "the media" and I should accept that the media never gets it right. I pointed out the tan printed map of the area with that name on top was not distributed by"the media." To follow that reasoning, The Patch must have misquoted Ms.Floy in today's article calling the community by that name. Please do not use West Village as a designation of this area. My house is in Evanston and that is where I sent my daughter to school, vote, pay taxes. and welcome a police presence. Charlene Bos
Jessica Rudis July 25, 2011 at 04:41 PM
Charlene, If Patch has not gotten something right, we will gladly correct it. We refer to the area as the West Village in this article as the discussion originated with the business community, which is (as you noted) now called the West Village Business Association. We specify in the piece that "Community activists in the recently rebranded West Village..." as those who spoke out and were quoted in the article are members of the business community in that area. I understand that you have personal reasons for not wanting your home to be included in the rebranding effort, but we were not referring specifically to the residential area in this story. If we did in fact get something wrong, please let me know in the comments or via email so I can write a correction.
Teresa Hymes July 25, 2011 at 06:27 PM
I shop at the Dominicks on Clark and Howard and will agree that the small outpost for the Chicago police officers in the complex is quite affective. I also agree that having Evanston's finest posted inside of the store is overkill. Perhaps the store needs a better store manager. Question: Why does Northwest Evanston have such a high presence of officer's and the neighborhoods that could use the presence, do not?
Charlene Bos July 26, 2011 at 06:46 AM
Jessica, Thank you for answering. I have reread the article repeatedly and do not see a distinction between the residents and the business group name. It opens with " the community activists in the recently rebranded West Village." Members of the recently formed business group would be a more accurate description of those you quoted. It is not a personal reason I object to my home being included in a business associations attempt to "rebrand" an area. I object to the whole neighborhood being nominally moved out of Evanston without its approval. This reminds me of Atlanta. The streets in that city undergo a name change as they pass through different neighborhoods. It is makes no sense until you find out the reason for the confusion. During the reconstruction white people did not want to live on a street with the same name as a street black people lived on so they simply "rebranded"the street . This smells the same to me. Charlene Bos

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