The future of SROs in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood
If you’ve been in Chicago long enough you may remember tales of a troubled single-room occupancy hotel in Lakeview called The Diplomat. The building had a bad reputation for attracting crime and creating a nuisance for the neighbors. The same story has played out with many other Chicago SROs, especially on the North Side, but usually they end with private developers coming in and turning the desirable real estate into expensive rental housing. But The Diplomat is different. Thanks to city involvement, an affordable housing partnership was able to reopen it last week as a state-of-the-art supportive housing building called Buffett Place. North Side Bureau reporter Odette Yousef and Norman Groetzinger of the ONE Northside Housing Task Force talk about SRO preservation -- should they be preserved, and should the city be doing more to preserve them?