Controversy surrounds rehab facility in Lakeview

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - There’s fear and anger in Lakeview over signs protesting a sober housing facility that may be built in the neighborhood.

The signs, some say, are in poor taste. Even some opponents of the possible sober housing project think the signs are out of line.

The 3700 block of North Bosworth was filled with happy children on Wednesday, and so was nearby Juniper Park. But many of their parents are concerned and upset about the proposed Rosecrance Recovery Center, now under construction, just a block or two away.

“My concern is that you're basically running a transient hotel that's going to have new guests every month or every 15 days, and they have no vesting into the neighborhood,” said resident Jen Lipford.

The opposition, however, took an ugly turn in recent weeks when some new signs were posted in the neighborhood, warning that "if Rosecrance's proposal goes through, you may have a heroin addict, or a meth addict, or someone with a criminal record sitting here."

The signs opposing the proposal were placed on park benches in playgrounds. They're now gone, and surprisingly, it was opponents of the proposal who helped take them down.

“We had absolutely nothing to do with them. They in no way represent our mission, our beliefs, our sentiments on this issue,” said Bridget Lohrius of the Lakeview Action Committee.

Lohrius heads a neighborhood group opposing the recovery center. She says those signs went too far, even though concerns about vulnerable children, property values, and other unanswered questions still leave her firmly against the proposal.

“Clearly people need help, and I think all of us would support that. It's simply a question of, are these guys the right guys for the job,” Lohrius said.

FOX 32 wasn’t able to reach Rosecrance, but the Rockford-based company has previously told us that it's recovering alcohol and drug addicts will be closely monitored, and local residents should not be concerned.

“We want to be good neighbors. We want to work with the community, we want to contribute, and Rosecrance wants to be a good neighbor here,” said Chris Yadron of Rosecrance.