Arnstein & Lehr Chicago Partner Howard J. Swibel and Hoffman Estates Partner Nancy S. Harbottle successfully represented the family of an autistic child who required a variance to install a playground set in their front yard. Under the Northern Illinois villages zoning ordinance, playground equipment could not be placed in a front yard, however their home was positioned on a corner lot, containing two “front yards.” At the hearing before the zoning board of appeals, the child’s therapist testified that the equipment was necessary to provide the child with therapeutic opportunities, and due to a danger to others and himself, he could not play in a community park. Mr. Swibel and Ms. Harbottle spent many hours researching the zoning ordinance and preparing submissions, witnesses and their arguments. In an emotional victory, Mr. Swibel and Ms. Harbottle prevailed in a vote of 4 to 2.
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